Lessons from Lent: Day Ten

28 Feb

creation swap lessons from lent coffee cup Kelly Sikkema 22940

An Explanation of Lessons from Lent

In the next 40 days (31 now because you have already accomplished nine), the weeks leading up to Easter, the posts on Glimpsed Glory will be different. I am reading through the New Testament during this time and I am hoping the Holy Spirit will lead me to a fresh revelation each and every day. I’m going into it with a prayerful heart and an expectant spirit but I will fully confess to you that my soul feels sluggish.

I have been in a place of exhaustion over these last months. My mind has been clouded, my body has ached and insomnia has been my companion since late December. The enemy has been and is still whispering in my ear that my Jesus has forgotten me . . . that He has finally tired of my imperfections and left me behind.

I’m not giving in to it! I am going to fight the good fight of faith and follow the example of my Nehemiah Man. I am going to stand firm in my faith because if I do not, I will not stand at all. I’m praising God for bringing me to a place of emptiness so that I can look to Him to fill my cup.

I’m coming before the Lord and I’m asking Him to do a new thing in me. To rouse my heart to His side and to draw me near in real and tangible ways. To plow through the fog that has settled over me in the form of health issues, physical stress, and emotional upheaval and lay a level path before me. I’m entering the throne room and I’m humbly reminding Him that He has invited me to come in my time of need. O Lord – be near to me. Love me where I am. Take me where I need to be.

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That’s the cry of my heart Sweet Sister and I’m thinking that if I am in this place that perhaps you are too. It might be that different life situations have brought us here but here we are. If that’s the case, I want you to know that you are not alone and that you have a faith sister to walk through it with. We can do this together – you and I. It’s why God gave us to one another. We can join our hearts and we can offer up the next 40 days to the Beautiful One and trust Him to do the beautiful thing in us.

So here’s what I’ll do. I’ll post the daily reading on the blog (except for Sundays) and if you read the Scriptures not only will you have read through the entire New Testament by Easter but God promises that He’ll show you deep and unsearchable things you do not know. He promises that His word is alive and active and will transform your heart. I could use some transformation. What about you?

At the end of the daily passage, I’m going to share my “Lesson from Lent” – nothing long or drawn out just something that God uses to speak straight to my heart from the Scripture that day. I’m putting it at the end because if your time runs short on a particular day – I want you to skip reading my words, not His.

I’m hoping that you’ll start your own running record of what God is showing you. Maybe you’ll even be moved to leave a comment so your Sisters can glean from what you’re learning. No matter how you choose to keep track of all He shares with you . . . treasure it up in your heart Sweet One, meditate on it, mull it over, consider the whisper of the Lover of your soul. The God of the Universe is the only Voice we need to revive our tired souls. So, let’s you and I lean in close, pray for ears to hear and hearts to respond. Let’s dig in to the riches He has given us and prepare to be amazed by what He will reveal to our expectant hearts. O Sister, let’s boldly ask Him for a lesson from Lent and then brace ourselves for a glimpse of Glory!

Day Ten

February 28, 2015 ~~ Luke 5-8

Amplified Bible

Footnotes: I’ve left the footnotes in place if you would like to track down sources in word study and language. Please follow the link to each chapter and scroll to the bottom of the passage.

Luke 5

Now it occurred that while the people pressed upon Jesus to hear the message of God, He was standing by the Lake of Gennesaret (Sea of Galilee). And He saw two boats drawn up by the lake, but the fishermen had gone down from them and were washing their nets. And getting into one of the boats, [the one] that belonged to Simon (Peter), He requested him to draw away a little from the shore. Then He sat down and continued to teach the crowd [of people] from the boat. When He had stopped speaking, He said to Simon (Peter), Put out into the deep [water], and lower your nets for a haul. And Simon (Peter) answered, Master, we toiled all night [[a]exhaustingly] and caught nothing [in our nets]. But [b]on the ground of Your word, I will lower the nets [again].

And when they had done this, they caught a great number of fish; and as their nets were [[c]at the point of] breaking, They signaled to their partners in the other boat to come and take hold with them. And they came and filled both the boats, so that they began to sink. But when Simon Peter saw this, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord. For he was gripped with bewildering amazement [allied to terror], and all who were with him, at the haul of fish which they had made; 10 And so also were James and John, the sons of Zebedee, who were partners with Simon (Peter). And Jesus said to Simon, Have no fear; from now on you will be catching men! 11 And after they had run their boats on shore, they left everything and [d] joined Him as His disciples and sided with His party and accompanied Him.

12 While He was in one of the towns, there came a man full of (covered with) leprosy; and when he saw Jesus, he fell on his face and implored Him, saying, Lord, if You are willing, You are able to cure me and make me clean. 13 And [Jesus] reached out His hand and touched him, saying, I am willing; be cleansed! And immediately the leprosy left him. 14 And [Jesus] charged him to tell no one [[e]that he might chance to meet], [f]until [He said] you go and show yourself to the priest, and make an offering for your purification, as Moses commanded, for a testimony and proof to the people, that they may have evidence [of your healing].

15 But so much the more the news spread abroad concerning Him, and great crowds kept coming together to hear [Him] and to be healed by Him of their infirmities.

16 But He Himself withdrew [in retirement] to the wilderness (desert) and prayed.

17 One of those days, as He was teaching, there were Pharisees and teachers of the Law sitting by, who had come from every village and town of Galilee and Judea and from Jerusalem. And the power of the Lord was [present] with Him to heal [g]them. 18 And behold, some men were bringing on a stretcher a man who was paralyzed, and they tried to carry him in and lay him before [Jesus]. 19 But finding no way to bring him in because of the crowd, they went up on the roof and lowered him with his stretcher through the tiles into the midst, in front of Jesus. 20 And when He saw [their confidence in Him, springing from] their faith, He said, Man, your sins are forgiven you! 21 And the scribes and the Pharisees began to reason and question and argue, saying, Who is this [Man] Who speaks blasphemies? Who can forgive sins but God alone? 22 But Jesus, knowing their thoughts and questionings, answered them, Why do you question in your hearts? 23 Which is easier: to say, Your sins are forgiven you, or to say, Arise and walk [about]? 24 But that you may know that the Son of Man has the [[h]power of] authority and right on earth to forgive sins, He said to the paralyzed man, I say to you, arise, pick up your litter (stretcher), and go to your own house! 25 And instantly [the man] stood up before them and picked up what he had been lying on and went away to his house, [i]recognizing and praising and thanking God.

26 And overwhelming astonishment and ecstasy seized them all, and they [j]recognized and praised and thanked God; and they were filled with and controlled by reverential fear and kept saying, We have seen wonderful and strange and incredible and unthinkable things today!

27 And after this, Jesus went out and looked [attentively] at a tax collector named Levi sitting at the tax office; and He said to him, [k]Join Me as a disciple and side with My party and accompany Me. 28 And he forsook everything and got up and followed Him [becoming His disciple and siding with His party]. 29 And Levi (Matthew) made a great banquet for Him in his own house, and there was a large company of tax collectors and others who were reclining [at the table] with them.

30 Now the Pharisees and their scribes were grumbling against Jesus’ disciples, saying, Why are you eating and drinking with tax collectors and [preeminently] sinful people? 31 And Jesus replied to them, It is not those who are healthy who need a physician, but those who are sick. 32 I have not come to arouse and invite and call the righteous, but [l]the erring ones ([m]those not free from sin) to repentance [[n]to change their minds for the better and heartily to amend their ways, with abhorrence of their past sins].

33 Then they said to Him, The disciples of John practice fasting often and offer up prayers of [special] petition, and so do [the disciples] of the Pharisees also, but Yours eat and drink. 34 And Jesus said to them, Can you make the wedding guests fast as long as the bridegroom is with them? 35 But the days will come when the bridegroom will be taken from them; and then they will fast in those days. 36 He told them a [o]proverb also: No one puts a patch from a new garment on an old garment; if he does, he will both tear the new one, and the patch from the new [one] will not match the old [garment]. 37 And no one pours new wine into old wineskins; if he does, the fresh wine will burst the skins and it will be spilled and the skins will be ruined (destroyed). 38 But new wine must be put into fresh wineskins. 39 And no one after drinking old wine immediately desires new wine, for he says, The old is good or [p]better.

Luke 6

One Sabbath while Jesus was passing through the fields of standing grain, it occurred that His disciples picked some of the spikes and ate [of the grain], rubbing it out in their hands.

But some of the Pharisees asked them, Why are you doing what is not permitted to be done on the Sabbath days? And Jesus replied to them, saying, Have you never so much as read what David did when he was hungry, he and those who were with him?—How he went into the house of God and took and ate the [sacred] loaves of the showbread, which it is not permitted for any except only the priests to eat, and also gave to those [who were] with him? And He said to them, The Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath.

And it occurred on another Sabbath that when He went into the synagogue and taught, a man was present whose right hand was withered. And the scribes and the Pharisees kept watching Jesus to see whether He would [actually] heal on the Sabbath, in order that they might get [some ground for] accusation against Him. But He was aware all along of their thoughts, and He said to the man with the withered hand, Come and stand here in the midst. And he arose and stood there. Then Jesus said to them, I ask you, is it lawful and right on the Sabbath to do good [[a]so that someone derives advantage from it] or to do evil, to save a life [and [b]make a soul safe] or to destroy it? 10 Then He glanced around at them all and said to the man, Stretch out your hand! And he did so, and his hand was fully restored [c]like the other one.

11 But they were filled with lack of understanding and senseless rage and discussed (consulted) with one another what they might do to Jesus.

12 Now in those days it occurred that He went up into a mountain to pray, and spent the whole night in prayer to God. 13 And when it was day, He summoned His disciples and selected from them twelve, whom He named apostles (special messengers): 14 They were Simon, whom He named Peter, and his brother Andrew; and James and John; and Philip and Bartholomew; 15 And Matthew and Thomas; and James son of Alphaeus, and Simon who was called the Zealot, 16 And Judas son of James, and Judas Iscariot, who became a traitor (a treacherous, basely faithless person).

17 And Jesus came down with them and took His stand on a level spot, with a great crowd of His disciples and a vast throng of people from all over Judea and Jerusalem and the seacoast of Tyre and Sidon, who came to listen to Him and to be cured of their diseases—18 Even those who were disturbed and troubled with unclean spirits, and they were being healed [also]. 19 And all the multitude were seeking to touch Him, for healing power was all the while going forth from Him and curing them all [[d]saving them from severe illnesses or calamities].

20 And solemnly lifting up His eyes on His disciples, He said: Blessed (happy—[e]with life-joy and satisfaction in God’s favor and salvation, apart from your outward condition—and [f]to be envied) are you poor and [g]lowly and afflicted (destitute of wealth, influence, position, and honor), for the kingdom of God is yours!

21 Blessed (happy—[h]with life-joy and satisfaction in God’s favor and salvation, apart from your outward condition—and [i]to be envied) are you who hunger and seek with eager desire now, for you shall be filled and completely satisfied! Blessed (happy—[j]with life-joy and satisfaction in God’s favor and salvation, apart from your outward condition—and [k]to be envied) are you who weep and sob now, for you shall laugh!

22 Blessed (happy—[l]with life-joy and satisfaction in God’s favor and salvation, apart from your outward condition—and [m]to be envied) are you when people despise (hate) you, and when they exclude and excommunicate you [as disreputable] and revile and denounce you and defame and cast out and spurn your name as evil (wicked) on account of the Son of Man. 23 Rejoice and be glad at such a time and exult and leap for joy, for behold, your reward is rich and great and strong and intense and abundant in heaven; for even so their forefathers treated the prophets.

24 But woe to (alas for) you who are rich ([n]abounding in material resources), for you already are receiving your consolation (the solace and sense of strengthening and cheer that come from prosperity) and have taken and enjoyed your comfort in full [having nothing left to be awarded you].

25 Woe to (alas for) you who are full now (completely filled, luxuriously gorged and satiated), for you shall hunger and suffer want! Woe to (alas for) you who laugh now, for you shall mourn and weep and wail!

26 Woe to (alas for) you when everyone speaks fairly and handsomely of you and praises you, for even so their forefathers did to the false prophets.

27 But I say to you who are listening now to Me: [[o]in order to heed, make it a practice to] love your enemies, treat well (do good to, act nobly toward) those who detest you and pursue you with hatred, 28 Invoke blessings upon and pray for the happiness of those who curse you, implore God’s blessing (favor) upon those who abuse you [who revile, reproach, disparage, and high-handedly misuse you]. 29 To the one who strikes you on the [p]jaw or cheek, offer the other [q]jaw or cheek also; and from him who takes away your outer garment, do not withhold your undergarment as well. 30 Give away to everyone who begs of you [who is [r]in want of necessities], and of him who takes away from you your goods, do not demand or require them back again. 31 And as you would like and desire that men would do to you, do exactly so to them.

32 If you [merely] love those who love you, what [s]quality of credit and thanks is that to you? For even [t]the [very] sinners love their lovers (those who love them). 33 And if you are kind and good and do favors to and benefit those who are kind and good and do favors to and benefit you, what [u]quality of credit and thanks is that to you? For even [v]the preeminently sinful do the same. 34 And if you lend money [w]at interest to those from whom you hope to receive, what [x]quality of credit and thanks is that to you? Even notorious sinners lend money [y]at interest to sinners, so as to recover as much again.

35 But love your enemies and be kind and do good [doing favors [z]so that someone derives benefit from them] and lend, expecting and hoping for nothing in return but [aa]considering nothing as lost and despairing of no one; and then your recompense (your reward) will be great (rich, strong, intense, and abundant), and you will be sons of the Most High, for He is kind and charitable and good to the ungrateful and the selfish and wicked. 36 So be merciful (sympathetic, tender, responsive, and compassionate) even as your Father is [all these].

37 Judge not [neither pronouncing judgment nor subjecting to censure], and you will not be judged; do not condemn and pronounce guilty, and you will not be condemned and pronounced guilty; acquit and forgive and [ab]release (give up resentment, let it drop), and you will be acquitted and forgiven and [ac]released. 38 Give, and [gifts] will be given to you; good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over, will they pour [ad]into [the pouch formed by] the bosom [of your robe and used as a bag]. For with the measure you deal out [with the measure you use when you confer benefits on others], it will be measured back to you.

39 He further told them [ae]a proverb: Can a blind [man] guide and direct a blind [man]? Will they not both stumble into a ditch or a [af]hole in the ground? 40 A pupil is not superior to his teacher, but everyone [when he is] completely trained (readjusted, restored, set to rights, and perfected) will be like his teacher.

41 Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye but do not notice or consider the beam [of timber] that is in your own eye? 42 Or how can you say to your brother, Brother, allow me to take out the speck that is in your eye, when you yourself do not see the beam that is in your own eye? You actor (pretender, hypocrite)! First take the beam out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take out the speck that is in your brother’s eye.

43 For there is no good (healthy) tree that bears decayed (worthless, stale) fruit, nor on the other hand does a decayed (worthless, sickly) tree bear good fruit. 44 For each tree is known and identified by its own fruit; for figs are not gathered from thornbushes, nor is a cluster of grapes picked from a bramblebush. 45 The upright (honorable, intrinsically good) man out of the good treasure [stored] in his heart produces what is upright (honorable and intrinsically good), and the evil man out of the evil storehouse brings forth that which is depraved (wicked and intrinsically evil); for out of the abundance (overflow) of the heart his mouth speaks.

46 Why do you call Me, Lord, Lord, and do not [practice] what I tell you? 47 For everyone who comes to Me and listens to My words [in order to heed their teaching] and does them, I will show you what he is like: 48 He is like a man building a house, who dug and went down deep and laid a foundation upon the rock; and when a flood arose, the torrent broke against that house and could not shake or move it, because it had been securely built or [ag]founded on a rock. 49 But he who merely hears and does not practice doing My words is like a man who built a house on the ground without a foundation, against which the torrent burst, and immediately it collapsed and fell, and the breaking and ruin of that house was great.

Luke 7

After Jesus had finished all that He had to say in the hearing of the people [on the mountain], He entered Capernaum.

Now a centurion had a bond servant who was held in honor and highly valued by him, who was sick and at the point of death. And when the centurion heard of Jesus, he sent some Jewish elders to Him, requesting Him to come and make his bond servant well. And when they reached Jesus, they begged Him earnestly, saying, He is worthy that You should do this for him, For he loves our nation and he built us our synagogue [at his own expense]. And Jesus went with them. But when He was not far from the house, the centurion sent [some] friends to Him, saying, Lord, do not trouble [Yourself], for I am not [a]sufficiently worthy to have You come under my roof; Neither did I consider myself worthy to come to You. But [just] speak a word, and my servant boy will be healed. For I also am a man [daily] subject to authority, with soldiers under me. And I say to one, Go, and he goes; and to another, Come, and he comes; and to my bond servant, Do this, and he does it. Now when Jesus heard this, He marveled at him, and He turned and said to the crowd that followed Him, I tell you, not even in [all] Israel have I found such great faith [as this]. 10 And when the messengers who had been sent returned to the house, they found the bond servant [b]who had been ill quite well again.

11 [c]Soon afterward, Jesus went to a town called Nain, and His disciples and a great throng accompanied Him. 12 [Just] as He drew near the gate of the town, behold, a man who had died was being carried out—the only son of his mother, and she was a widow; and a large gathering from the town was accompanying her. 13 And when the Lord saw her, He had compassion on her and said to her, Do not weep. 14 And He went forward and touched the funeral bier, and the pallbearers stood still. And He said, Young man, I say to you, arise [[d]from death]! 15 And the man [who was] dead sat up and began to speak. And [Jesus] gave him [back] to his mother. 16 Profound and reverent fear seized them all, and they began [e]to recognize God and praise and give thanks, saying, A great [f]Prophet has appeared among us! And God has visited His people [in order to help and care for and provide for them]!

17 And this report concerning [Jesus] spread through the whole of Judea and all the country round about.

18 And John’s disciples brought him [who was now in prison] word of all these things. 19 And John summoned to him a certain two of his disciples and sent them to the Lord, saying, Are You He Who is to come, or shall we [continue to] look for another? 20 So the men came to Jesus and said, John the Baptist sent us to You to ask, Are You the One Who is to come, or shall we [continue to] look for another?

21 In that very hour Jesus was healing many [people] of sicknesses and distressing bodily plagues and evil spirits, and to many who were blind He gave [[g]a free, gracious, joy-giving gift of] sight. 22 So He replied to them, Go and tell John what you have seen and heard: the blind receive their sight, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, and the poor have the good news (the Gospel) preached to them. 23 And blessed (happy—[h]with life-joy and satisfaction in God’s favor and salvation, apart from outward conditions—and [i]to be envied) is he who takes no offense in Me and who is not hurt or resentful or annoyed or repelled or made to stumble [[j]whatever may occur].

24 And the messengers of John having departed, Jesus began to speak to the crowds about John: What did you go out into the desert to gaze on? A reed shaken and swayed by the wind? 25 Then what did you go out to see? A man dressed up in soft garments? Behold, those who wear fine apparel and live in luxury are in the courts or palaces of kings. 26 What then did you go out to see? A prophet (a forthteller)? Yes, I tell you, and far more than a prophet. 27 This is the one of whom it is written, Behold, I send My messenger before Your face, who shall make ready Your way before You. 28 I tell you, among those born of women there is no one greater than John; but [k]he that is inferior [to the other citizens] in the kingdom of God is greater [in incomparable privilege] than he. 29 And all the people who heard Him, even the tax collectors, acknowledged the justice of God [in [l]calling them to repentance and in pronouncing future wrath on the impenitent], being baptized with the baptism of John. 30 But the Pharisees and the lawyers [of the Mosaic Law] annulled and rejected and brought to nothing God’s purpose concerning themselves, by [refusing and] not being baptized by him [John].

31 So to what shall I compare the men of this generation? And what are they like? 32 They are like little children sitting in the marketplace, calling to one another and saying, We piped to you [playing wedding], and you did not dance; we sang dirges and wailed [playing funeral], and you did not weep. 33 For John the Baptist has come neither eating bread nor drinking wine, and you say, He has a demon. 34 The Son of Man has come eating and drinking, and you say, Behold, a Man Who is a glutton and a wine drinker, a friend of tax collectors and notorious sinners. 35 Yet wisdom is vindicated ([m]shown to be true and divine) by all her children [[n]by their life, character, and deeds].

36 One of the Pharisees asked Jesus to dine with him, and He went into the Pharisee’s house and reclined at table. 37 And behold, a woman of the town who was [o]an especially wicked sinner, when she learned that He was reclining at table in the Pharisee’s house, brought an alabaster flask of ointment (perfume). 38 And standing behind Him at His feet weeping, she began to wet His feet with [her] tears; and she wiped them with the hair of her head and kissed His feet [affectionately] and anointed them with the ointment (perfume). 39 Now when the Pharisee who had invited Him saw it, he said to himself, If this Man were a prophet, He would surely know who and what sort of woman this is who is touching Him—for she is a notorious sinner (a social outcast, devoted to sin).

40 And Jesus, replying, said to him, Simon, I have something to say to you. And he answered, Teacher, say it. 41 A certain lender of money [at interest] had two debtors: one owed him five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. 42 When they had no means of paying, he freely forgave them both. Now which of them will love him more? 43 Simon answered, The one, I take it, for whom he forgave and cancelled more. And Jesus said to him, You have decided correctly. 44 Then turning toward the woman, He said to Simon, Do you see this woman? When I came into your house, you gave Me no water for My feet, but she has wet My feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair. 45 You gave Me no kiss, but she from the moment I came in has not ceased [[p]intermittently] to kiss My feet tenderly and caressingly. 46 You did not anoint My head with [q][cheap, ordinary] oil, but she has anointed My feet with [r][costly, rare] perfume. 47 Therefore I tell you, her sins, many [as they are], are forgiven her—because she has loved much. But he who is forgiven little loves little. 48 And He said to her, Your sins are forgiven! 49 Then those who were at table with Him began to say among themselves, Who is this Who even forgives sins? 50 But Jesus said to the woman, Your faith has saved you; go (enter) [s]into peace [[t]in freedom from all the distresses that are experienced as the result of sin].

Luke 8

Soon afterward, [Jesus] went on through towns and villages, preaching and bringing the good news (the Gospel) of the kingdom of God. And the Twelve [apostles] were with Him, And also some women who had been cured of evil spirits and diseases: Mary, called Magdalene, from whom seven demons had been expelled; And Joanna, the wife of Chuza, Herod’s household manager; and Susanna; and many others, who ministered to and provided for [a]Him and them out of their property and personal belongings.

And when a very great throng was gathering together and people from town after town kept coming to Jesus, He said in a parable: A sower went out to sow seed; and as he sowed, some fell along the traveled path and was trodden underfoot, and the birds of the air ate it up. And some [seed] fell on the rock, and as soon as it sprouted, it withered away because it had no moisture. And other [seed] fell in the midst of the thorns, and the thorns grew up with it and choked it [off]. And some seed fell into good soil, and grew up and yielded a crop a hundred times [as great]. As He said these things, He called out, He who has ears to hear, let him be listening and let him [b]consider and understand by hearing!

And when His disciples asked Him the meaning of this parable, 10 He said to them, To you it has been given to [come progressively to] know (to recognize and understand more strongly and clearly) the mysteries and secrets of the kingdom of God, but for others they are in parables, so that, [though] looking, they may not see; and hearing, they may not comprehend.

11 Now the meaning of the parable is this: The seed is the Word of God. 12 Those along the traveled road are the people who have heard; then the devil comes and carries away the message out of their hearts, that they may not believe ([c]acknowledge Me as their Savior and devote themselves to Me) and be saved [here and hereafter]. 13 And those upon the rock [are the people] who, when they hear [the Word], receive and welcome it with joy; but these have no root. They believe for a while, and in time of trial and temptation fall away (withdraw and stand aloof). 14 And as for what fell among the thorns, these are [the people] who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked and suffocated with the anxieties and cares and riches and pleasures of life, and their fruit does not ripen (come to maturity and perfection). 15 But as for that [seed] in the good soil, these are [the people] who, hearing the Word, hold it fast in a just ([d]noble, virtuous) and worthy heart, and steadily bring forth fruit with patience.

16 No one after he has lighted a lamp covers it with a vessel or puts it under a [dining table] couch; but he puts it on a lampstand, that those who come in may see the light. 17 For there is nothing hidden that shall not be disclosed, nor anything secret that shall not be known and come out into the open. 18 Be careful therefore how you listen. For to him who has [spiritual knowledge] will more be given; and from him who does not have [spiritual knowledge], even what he thinks and [e]guesses and [f]supposes that he has will be taken away.

19 Then Jesus’ mother and His brothers came along toward Him, but they could not get to Him because of the crowd. 20 And it was told Him, Your mother and Your brothers are standing outside, desiring to have an interview with You. 21 But He answered them, My mother and My brothers are those who listen to the Word of God and do it!

22 One of those days He and His disciples got into a boat, and He said to them, Let us go across to the other side of the lake. So they put out to sea. 23 But as they were sailing, He fell off to sleep. And a [g] whirlwind revolving from below upwards swept down on the lake, and the boat was filling with water, and they were in great danger. 24 And the disciples came and woke Him, saying, Master, Master, we are perishing! And He, being thoroughly awakened, [h]censured and [i]blamed and rebuked the wind and the raging waves; and they ceased, and there came a calm. 25 And He said to them, [Why are you so fearful?] Where is your faith (your trust, your confidence in Me—in My veracity and My integrity)? And they were seized with alarm and profound and reverent dread, and they marveled, saying to one another, Who then is this, that He commands even wind and sea, and they obey Him?

26 Then they came to the country of the Gerasenes, which is opposite Galilee. 27 Now when Jesus stepped out on land, there met Him a certain man out of the town who had [was possessed by] demons. For a long time he had worn no clothes, and he lived not in a house but in the tombs. 28 And when he saw Jesus, he raised a deep (terrible) cry [from the depths of his throat] and fell down before Him [in terror] and shouted loudly, What have You [to do] with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? [[j]What have we in common?] I beg You, do not torment me! 29 For Jesus was already commanding the unclean spirit to come out of the man. For many times it had snatched and held him; he was kept under guard and bound with chains and fetters, but he would break the bonds and be driven by the demon into the wilderness (desert).

30 Jesus then asked him, What is your name? And he answered, Legion; for many demons had entered him. 31 And they begged [Jesus] not to command them to depart into the Abyss (bottomless pit). 32 Now a great herd of swine was there feeding on the hillside; and [the demons] begged Him to give them leave to enter these. And He allowed them [to do so]. 33 Then the demons came out of the man and entered into the swine, and the herd rushed down the steep cliff into the lake and were drowned. 34 When the herdsmen saw what had happened, they ran away and told it in the town and in the country. 35 And [people] went out to see what had occurred, and they came to Jesus and found the man from whom the demons had gone out, sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed and in his right (sound) mind; and they were seized with alarm and fear. 36 And those [also] who had seen it told them how he who had been possessed with demons was restored [to health]. 37 Then all the people of the country surrounding the Gerasenes’ district asked [Jesus] to depart from them, for they were possessed and suffering with dread and terror; so He entered a boat and returned [to the west side of the Sea of Galilee].

38 But the man from whom the demons had gone out kept begging and [k]praying that he might accompany Him and be with Him, but [Jesus] sent him away, saying, 39 Return to your home, and recount [the story] of how many and great things God has done for you. And [the man] departed, proclaiming throughout the whole city how much Jesus had done for him.

40 Now when Jesus came back [to Galilee], the crowd received and welcomed Him gladly, for they were all waiting and looking for Him. 41 And there came a man named Jairus, who had [for a [l]long time] been a director of the synagogue; and falling at the feet of Jesus, he begged Him to come to his house, 42 For he had an only daughter, about twelve years of age, and she was dying. As [Jesus] went, the people pressed together around Him [almost suffocating Him]. 43 And a woman who had suffered from a flow of blood for twelve years [m]and had spent all her living upon physicians, and could not be healed by anyone, 44 Came up behind Him and touched the fringe of His garment, and immediately her flow of blood ceased. 45 And Jesus said, Who is it who touched Me? When all were denying it, Peter [n]and those who were with him said, Master, the multitudes surround You and press You on every side! 46 But Jesus said, Someone did touch Me; for I perceived that [healing] power has gone forth from Me. 47 And when the woman saw that she had not escaped notice, she came up trembling, and, falling down before Him, she declared in the presence of all the people for what reason she had touched Him and how she had been instantly cured. 48 And He said to her, Daughter, your faith (your confidence and trust in Me) has made you well! Go (enter) [o]into peace ([p]untroubled, undisturbed well-being).

49 While He was still speaking, a man from the house of the director of the synagogue came and said [to Jairus], Your daughter is dead; do not [q]weary and trouble the Teacher any further. 50 But Jesus, on hearing this, answered him, Do not be seized with alarm or struck with fear; simply believe [[r]in Me as able to do this], and she shall be made well. 51 And when He came to the house, He permitted no one to enter with Him except Peter and John and James, and the girl’s father and mother. 52 And all were weeping for and bewailing her; but He said, Do not weep, for she is not dead but sleeping. 53 And they laughed Him to scorn, knowing full well that she was dead. 54 And grasping her hand, He called, saying, Child, arise [[s]from the sleep of death]! 55 And her spirit returned [[t]from death], and she arose immediately; and He directed that she should be given something to eat. 56 And her parents were amazed, but He charged them to tell no one what had occurred.

And all the Sisters, nets in hand, say “Amen”

#lessonsfromlent

Now it occurred that while the people pressed upon Jesus to hear the message of God, He was standing by the Lake of Gennesaret (Sea of Galilee). And He saw two boats drawn up by the lake, but the fishermen had gone down from them and were washing their nets. And getting into one of the boats, [the one] that belonged to Simon (Peter), He requested him to draw away a little from the shore. Then He sat down and continued to teach the crowd [of people] from the boat. When He had stopped speaking, He said to Simon (Peter), Put out into the deep [water], and lower your nets for a haul. And Simon (Peter) answered, Master, we toiled all night [[a]exhaustingly] and caught nothing [in our nets]. But [b]on the ground of Your word, I will lower the nets [again].

And when they had done this, they caught a great number of fish; and as their nets were [[c]at the point of] breaking, They signaled to their partners in the other boat to come and take hold with them. And they came and filled both the boats, so that they began to sink.  Luke 5:1-7

Peering from the shore of our lives what do we see . . .

We see fishermen willing to be interrupted and willing to heed the prompting of Christ to return to their labor. Even though they had toiled all night and caught nothing.  At His direction, they returned to the very same waters where their self-directed efforts had produced only frustration with the very same nets that had failed to catch a thing.  How often have we toiled “all night” and seen no visible signs that the fish might so much as entertain the idea of swimming in a new direction? How many times have we felt like it was just time to grab our gear and go?  And then Christ makes His presence known.  That’s the only change that occurred in this passage.  Jesus came.  He taught from the boat, His voice echoed across the water, and then He gave the command — go drop your nets again.  That says to me that Jesus brings the fish.

No Jesus . . . No Fish #lessonsfromlent

At the end of the teaching, He directed them to the deep water to fish. The waters where you can’t just look down in and see the fish swimming close to the surface or see the ripples on the top to let you know they are there. No, the fishermen would just have to drop those nets and trust Christ that the fish would be there. They had to believe that wherever His Holy Hand guided them would result in the good thing. They had to believe that Christ wanted an abundant, overflowing catch for them. And here’s the thing that makes me smile . . .

Jesus knows where the fish live. #lessonsfromlent

and

Jesus loves the fishermen.  #lessonsfromlent

But don’t you love the honesty of Peter—“Lord, we’ve been fishing all night long and haven’t caught a thing.“ So often I think we try to play a game of holy hide-and-seek with our disappointments, with our frustration, and with our exhaustion. The Messiah isn’t offended to hear us say we’re tired, we’re out of energy, or we’ve come to the end of ourselves with nothing to show for it. Maybe that’s just the place He wants us—the place where we depend on Him for the catch and not on our own ability to cast the net. Maybe that’s when we’ll throw out the net in His Name and not our own because no matter how skilled we are, without Him we’ll always come up empty.

My effort, my hands, my net . . . no fish. #lessonsfromlent

And then Peter comes to what Henry Blackaby calls a “crisis in belief.” Will he obey Jesus even though he’s trolled those waters all night and come up empty handed? Will he gather up all the equipment he’s cleaned and prepared to put away for the day? Will he listen to the Teacher with the crowds on the shore watching when circumstances appear that he would be a fool to go back out for another try? Yes! He will obey and return to the work “on the ground” of the word of Jesus. Don’t you think the crowd would have been just as anxious to see what came up in those nets? They all knew the night had produced nothing. They all heard the command. The all saw the obedience.

Fishermen are always watched from the shore. #lessonsfromlent

They all saw the obedience and they all saw the nets exploding with the catch. Fish were everywhere! And don’t you imagine those nets to have been filled with fish of all manner – fat fish, skinny fish, big fish, little fish, shiny fish—all kinds bursting from the nets. Isn’t that the way of Jesus—to welcome fish of every kind . . . No exclusions, no favorites.

Jesus loves all the fish. #lessonsfromlent

And when the haul was too big for Peter, the abundance more than he could have imagined, his partners rallied to his side. No fisherman can do it alone. The catch that Christ provides will always require more than one set of hands.

No fisherman can do it alone. #lessonsfromlent

Sweet One, we can lower our nets all night long but the catch depends on Jesus. We can work and toil all night and come away without a thing . . . but when Jesus speaks a word and the deep waters are stirred . . . then the catch will come.

That should make us shout the “Hallelujah!” Girlfriend because that takes all the pressure off the fishermen. We’re only to cast the net in full out obedience regardless of the crowd watching from the shore.   We throw it out there in His Name and for His glory. We grab a hold of the fact that the fish don’t swim our way because of anything to do with us. The nets will be empty until Jesus shows up. See, we get the blessing of hauling in the catch but make no mistake, it’s all Jesus.

It’s all Jesus. #lessonsfromlent

It's all Jesus.

Lessons from Lent: Day Nine

27 Feb

creation swap lessons from lent coffee cup Kelly Sikkema 22940

An Explanation of Lessons from Lent

In the next 40 days (32 now because you have already accomplished eight), the weeks leading up to Easter, the posts on Glimpsed Glory will be different. I am reading through the New Testament during this time and I am hoping the Holy Spirit will lead me to a fresh revelation each and every day. I’m going into it with a prayerful heart and an expectant spirit but I will fully confess to you that my soul feels sluggish.

I have been in a place of exhaustion over these last months. My mind has been clouded, my body has ached and insomnia has been my companion since late December. The enemy has been and is still whispering in my ear that my Jesus has forgotten me . . . that He has finally tired of my imperfections and left me behind.

I’m not giving in to it! I am going to fight the good fight of faith and follow the example of my Nehemiah Man. I am going to stand firm in my faith because if I do not, I will not stand at all. I’m praising God for bringing me to a place of emptiness so that I can look to Him to fill my cup.

I’m coming before the Lord and I’m asking Him to do a new thing in me. To rouse my heart to His side and to draw me near in real and tangible ways. To plow through the fog that has settled over me in the form of health issues, physical stress, and emotional upheaval and lay a level path before me. I’m entering the throne room and I’m humbly reminding Him that He has invited me to come in my time of need. O Lord – be near to me. Love me where I am. Take me where I need to be.

creation swap love me one flower 206081_Flower_Background

That’s the cry of my heart Sweet Sister and I’m thinking that if I am in this place that perhaps you are too. It might be that different life situations have brought us here but here we are. If that’s the case, I want you to know that you are not alone and that you have a faith sister to walk through it with. We can do this together – you and I. It’s why God gave us to one another. We can join our hearts and we can offer up the next 40 days to the Beautiful One and trust Him to do the beautiful thing in us.

So here’s what I’ll do. I’ll post the daily reading on the blog (except for Sundays) and if you read the Scriptures not only will you have read through the entire New Testament by Easter but God promises that He’ll show you deep and unsearchable things you do not know. He promises that His word is alive and active and will transform your heart. I could use some transformation. What about you?

At the end of the daily passage, I’m going to share my “Lesson from Lent” – nothing long or drawn out just something that God uses to speak straight to my heart from the Scripture that day. I’m putting it at the end because if your time runs short on a particular day – I want you to skip reading my words, not His.

I’m hoping that you’ll start your own running record of what God is showing you. Maybe you’ll even be moved to leave a comment so your Sisters can glean from what you’re learning. No matter how you choose to keep track of all He shares with you . . . treasure it up in your heart Sweet One, meditate on it, mull it over, consider the whisper of the Lover of your soul. The God of the Universe is the only Voice we need to revive our tired souls. So, let’s you and I lean in close, pray for ears to hear and hearts to respond. Let’s dig in to the riches He has given us and prepare to be amazed by what He will reveal to our expectant hearts. O Sister, let’s boldly ask Him for a lesson from Lent and then brace ourselves for a glimpse of Glory!

Day Nine

February 27, 2015 ~~ Luke 1-4

Amplified Bible

Footnotes: I’ve left the footnotes in place if you would like to track down sources in word study and language. Please follow the link to each chapter and scroll to the bottom of the passage.

Luke 1

Since [[a]as is well known] many have undertaken to put in order and draw up a [[b]thorough] narrative of the surely established deeds which have been accomplished and fulfilled [c] in and among us, Exactly as they were handed down to us by those who from the [[d]official] beginning [of Jesus’ ministry] were eyewitnesses and ministers of the Word [that is, of [e]the doctrine concerning the attainment through Christ of salvation in the kingdom of God], It seemed good and desirable to me, [and so I have determined] also after [f]having searched out diligently and followed all things closely and traced accurately the course from the highest to the minutest detail from the very first, to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus,

[My purpose is] that you may know the full truth and understand with certainty and security against error the accounts (histories) and doctrines of the faith of which you have been informed and in which you have been [g]orally instructed.

In the days when Herod was king of Judea there was a certain priest whose name was Zachariah, [h]of the daily service (the division) of Abia; and his wife was also a descendant of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. And they both were righteous in the sight of God, walking blamelessly in all the commandments and requirements of the Lord. But they had no child, for Elizabeth was barren; and both were [i]far advanced in years.

Now while on duty, serving as priest before God in the order of his division, As was the custom of the priesthood, it fell to him by lot to enter [the [j]sanctuary of] the temple of the Lord and burn incense. 10 And all the throng of people were praying outside [in the court] at the hour of incense [burning]. 11 And there appeared to him an angel of the Lord, standing at the right side of the altar of incense. 12 And when Zachariah saw him, he was troubled, and fear took possession of him. 13 But the angel said to him, Do not be afraid, Zachariah, because your petition [k]was heard, and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you must call his name John [God is favorable]. 14 And you shall have joy and exultant delight, and many will rejoice over his birth, 15 For he will be great and distinguished in the sight of the Lord. And he must drink no wine nor strong drink, and he will be filled with and controlled by the Holy Spirit even [l]in and from his mother’s womb. 16 And he will turn back and cause to return many of the sons of Israel to the Lord their God, 17 And he will [himself] go before Him in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn back the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient and incredulous and unpersuadable to the wisdom of the upright [which is [m]the knowledge and holy love of the will of God]—in order to make ready for the Lord a people [perfectly] prepared [in spirit, [n]adjusted and disposed and placed in the right moral state].

18 And Zachariah said to the angel, By what shall I know and be sure of this? For I am an old man, and my wife is well advanced in years. 19 And the angel replied to him, I am Gabriel. I stand in the [very] presence of God, and I have been sent to talk to you and to bring you this good news. 20 Now behold, you will be and [o]will continue to be silent and not able to speak till the day when these things take place, because you have not believed what I told you; but my words are [p]of a kind which will be fulfilled in the appointed and proper time.

21 Now the people kept waiting for Zachariah, and they wondered at his delaying [so long] in the [q]sanctuary. 22 But when he did come out, he was unable to speak to them; and they [[r]clearly] perceived that he had seen a vision in the [s]sanctuary; and he kept making signs to them, still he remained dumb. 23 And when his time of performing priestly functions was ended, he returned to his [own] house.

24 Now after this his wife Elizabeth became pregnant, and for five months she secluded herself [t]entirely, saying, [I have hid myself] 25 [u]Because thus the Lord has dealt with me in the days when He deigned to look on me to take away my reproach among men.

26 Now in the sixth month [after that], the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a town of Galilee named Nazareth, 27 To a girl never having been married and a [v]virgin engaged to be married to a man whose name was Joseph, a descendant of the house of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary. 28 And he came to her and said, Hail, O favored one [[w]endued with grace]! The Lord is with you! [x]Blessed (favored of God) are you before all other women! 29 But when she saw him, she was greatly troubled and disturbed and confused at what he said and kept revolving in her mind what such a greeting might mean.

30 And the angel said to her, Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found grace ([y]free, spontaneous, absolute favor and loving-kindness) with God. 31 And listen! You will become pregnant and will give birth to a Son, and you shall call His name Jesus. 32 He will be great (eminent) and will be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord God will give to Him the throne of His forefather David, 33 And He will reign over the house of Jacob throughout the ages; and of His reign there will be no end.

34 And Mary said to the angel, How can this be, since I have no [intimacy with any man as a] husband? 35 Then the angel said to her, The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you [like a shining cloud]; and so the holy (pure, sinless) Thing (Offspring) which shall be born of you will be called the Son of God.

36 And listen! Your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son, and this is now the sixth month with her who was called barren. 37 For with God nothing is ever impossible and no word from God shall be without power or impossible of fulfillment.

38 Then Mary said, Behold, I am the handmaiden of the Lord; let it be done to me according to what you have said. And the angel left her. 39 And at that time Mary arose and went with haste into the hill country to a town of Judah, 40 And she went to the house of Zachariah and, entering it, saluted Elizabeth.

41 And it occurred that when Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with and controlled by the Holy Spirit. 42 And she cried out with a loud cry, and then exclaimed, Blessed (favored of God) above all other women are you! And blessed (favored of God) is the Fruit of your womb! 43 And how [have I deserved that this honor should] be granted to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? 44 For behold, the instant the sound of your salutation reached my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy. 45 And blessed (happy, [z]to be envied) is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of the things that were spoken to her from the Lord.

46 And Mary said, My soul magnifies and extols the Lord, 47 And my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, 48 For He has looked upon the low station and humiliation of His handmaiden. For behold, from now on all generations [of all ages] will call me blessed and declare me happy and [aa]to be envied! 49 For He Who is almighty has done great things for me—and holy is His name [to be venerated in His purity, majesty and glory]! 50 And His mercy (His compassion and kindness toward the miserable and afflicted) is on those who fear Him with godly reverence, from generation to generation and age to age. 51 He has shown strength and [ab]made might with His arm; He has scattered the proud and haughty in and by the imagination and purpose and designs of their hearts. 52 He has put down the mighty from their thrones and exalted those of low degree. 53 He has filled and satisfied the hungry with good things, and the rich He has sent away empty-handed [without a gift]. 54 He has laid hold on His servant Israel [to help him, to espouse his cause], in remembrance of His mercy, 55 Even as He promised to our forefathers, to Abraham and to his descendants forever.

56 And Mary remained with her [Elizabeth] for about three months and [then] returned to her [own] home.

57 Now the time that Elizabeth should be delivered came, and she gave birth to a son. 58 And her neighbors and relatives heard that the Lord had shown great mercy on her, and they rejoiced with her. 59 And it occurred that on the eighth day, when they came to circumcise the child, they were intending to call him Zachariah after his father, 60 But his mother answered, Not so! But he shall be called John. 61 And they said to her, None of your relatives is called by that name. 62 And they inquired with signs to his father [as to] what he wanted to have him called. 63 Then Zachariah asked for a writing tablet and wrote, His name is John. And they were all astonished. 64 And at once his mouth was opened and his tongue loosed, and he began to speak, blessing and praising and thanking God.

65 And awe and reverential fear came on all their neighbors; and all these things were discussed throughout the hill country of Judea. 66 And all who heard them laid them up in their hearts, saying, Whatever will this little boy be then? For the hand of the Lord was [[ac]so evidently] with him [protecting and aiding him].

67 Now Zachariah his father was filled with and controlled by the Holy Spirit and prophesied, saying, 68 Blessed (praised and extolled and thanked) be the Lord, the God of Israel, because He has come and brought deliverance and redemption to His people! 69 And He has raised up a Horn of salvation [a mighty and valiant Helper, the Author of salvation] for us in the house of David His servant— 70 This is as He promised by the mouth of His holy prophets from the most ancient times [in the memory of man]—71 That we should have deliverance and be saved from our enemies and from the hand of all who detest and pursue us with hatred; 72 To make true and show the mercy and compassion and kindness [promised] to our forefathers and to remember and carry out His holy covenant [to bless, which is [ad]all the more sacred because it is made by God Himself], 73 That covenant He sealed by oath to our forefather Abraham: 74 To grant us that we, being delivered from the hand of our foes, might serve Him fearlessly 75 In holiness (divine consecration) and righteousness [in accordance with the everlasting principles of right] within His presence all the days of our lives.

76 And you, little one, shall be called a prophet of the Most High; for you shall go on before the face of the Lord to make ready His ways, 77 To bring and give the knowledge of salvation to His people in the forgiveness and remission of their sins. 78 Because of and through the heart of tender mercy and loving-kindness of our God, a Light from on high will dawn upon us and visit [us] 79 To shine upon and give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to direct and guide our feet in a straight line into the way of peace.

80 And the little boy grew and became strong in spirit; and he was in the deserts (wilderness) until the day of his appearing to Israel [the commencement of his public ministry].

Luke 2

In those days it occurred that a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that the whole [a]Roman empire should be registered. This was the first enrollment, and it was made when Quirinius was governor of Syria. And all the people were going to be registered, each to his own city or town.

And Joseph also went up from Galilee from the town of Nazareth to Judea, to the town of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and family of David, To be enrolled with Mary, his espoused ([b]married) wife, who was about to become a mother.

And while they were there, the time came for her delivery, And she gave birth to her Son, her Firstborn; and she wrapped Him in swaddling clothes and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room or place for them in the inn.

And in that vicinity there were shepherds living [out under the open sky] in the field, watching [in shifts] over their flock by night. And behold, an angel of the Lord stood by them, and the glory of the Lord flashed and shone all about them, and they were terribly frightened. 10 But the angel said to them, Do not be afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of a great joy which will come to all the people. 11 For to you is born this day in the town of David a Savior, Who is Christ (the Messiah) the Lord! 12 And this will be a sign for you [by which you will recognize Him]: you will find [[c]after searching] a Baby wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger. 13 Then suddenly there appeared with the angel an army of the troops of heaven ([d]a heavenly knighthood), praising God and saying, 14 Glory to God in the highest [heaven], and on earth peace among men with whom He is well pleased [[e]men of goodwill, of His favor].

15 When the angels went away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us go over to Bethlehem and see this thing ([f]saying) that has come to pass, which the Lord has made known to us. 16 So they went with haste and [[g]by searching] found Mary and Joseph, and the Baby lying in a manger. 17 And when they saw it, they made known what had been told them concerning this Child, 18 And all who heard it were astounded and marveled at what the shepherds told them.

19 But Mary was keeping [h]within herself all these things ([i]sayings), weighing and pondering them in her heart.

20 And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, just as it had been told them.

21 And at the end of eight days, when [the Baby] was to be circumcised, He was called Jesus, the name given by the angel before He was conceived in the womb. 22 And when the time for their purification [the mother’s purification and the Baby’s dedication] came according to the Law of Moses, they brought Him up to Jerusalem to present Him to the Lord— 23 As it is written in the Law of the Lord, Every [firstborn] male that opens the womb shall be set apart and dedicated and called holy to the Lord— 24 And [they came also] to offer a sacrifice according to what is said in the Law of the Lord: a pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons.

25 Now there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon, and this man was righteous and devout [cautiously and carefully observing the divine Law], and looking for the Consolation of Israel; and the Holy Spirit was upon him. 26 And it had been divinely revealed (communicated) to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One). 27 And prompted by the [Holy] Spirit, he came into the temple [[j]enclosure]; and when the parents brought in the little child Jesus to do for Him what was customary according to the Law, 28 [Simeon] took Him up in his arms and praised and thanked God and said, 29 And now, Lord, You are releasing Your servant to depart (leave this world) in peace, according to Your word. 30 For with my [own] eyes I have seen Your Salvation, 31 Which You have ordained and prepared before (in the presence of) all peoples, 32 A Light for [k]revelation to the Gentiles [to disclose what was before unknown] and [to bring] praise and honor and glory to Your people Israel.

33 And His [legal] father and [His] mother were marveling at what was said about Him. 34 And Simeon blessed them and said to Mary His mother, Behold, this Child is appointed and destined for the fall and rising of many in Israel, and for a sign that is spoken against—35 And a sword will pierce through your own soul also—that the secret thoughts and purposes of many hearts may be brought out and disclosed.

36 And there was also a prophetess, Anna, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was very old, having lived with her husband seven years from her maidenhood, 37 And as a widow even for eighty-four years. She did not go out from the temple [l]enclosure, but was worshiping night and day with fasting and prayer. 38 And she too came up at that same hour, and she returned thanks to God and talked of [Jesus] to all who were looking for the redemption (deliverance) of Jerusalem.

39 And when they had done everything according to the Law of the Lord, they went back into Galilee to their own town, Nazareth. 40 And the Child grew and became strong in spirit, filled with wisdom; and the grace (favor and spiritual blessing) of God was upon Him.

41 Now His parents went to Jerusalem every year to the Passover Feast. 42 And when He was twelve years [old], they went up, as was their custom. 43 And when the Feast was ended, as they were returning, the boy Jesus remained behind in Jerusalem. Now His parents did not know this, 44 But, supposing Him to be in the caravan, they traveled on a day’s journey; and [then] they sought Him [diligently, looking up and down for Him] among their kinsfolk and acquaintances. 45 And when they failed to find Him, they went back to Jerusalem, looking for Him [up and down] all the way. 46 After three days they found Him [came upon Him] in the [m][court of the] temple, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. 47 And all who heard Him were astonished and overwhelmed with bewildered wonder at His intelligence and understanding and His replies.

48 And when they [Joseph and Mary] saw Him, they were amazed; and His mother said to Him, Child, why have You treated us like this? Here Your father and I have been anxiously looking for You [distressed and tormented]. 49 And He said to them, How is it that you had to look for Me? Did you not see and know that it is necessary [as a duty] for Me [n]to be in My Father’s house and [occupied] about My Father’s business? 50 But they did not comprehend what He was saying to them.

51 And He went down with them and came to Nazareth and was [habitually] obedient to them; and his mother kept and closely and persistently guarded all these things in her heart. 52 And Jesus increased in wisdom (in broad and full understanding) and in stature and years, and in favor with God and man.

Luke 3

In the fifteenth year of Tiberius Caesar’s reign—when Pontius Pilate was governor of Judea, and Herod was tetrarch of Galilee, and his brother Philip tetrarch of the region of Ituraea and Trachonitis, and Lysanias tetrarch of Abilene—

In the high priesthood of Annas and Caiaphas, the Word of God [[a]concerning the attainment through Christ of salvation in the kingdom of God] came to John son of Zachariah in the wilderness (desert). And he went into all the country round about the Jordan, preaching a baptism of repentance ([b]of hearty amending of their ways, with abhorrence of past wrongdoing) unto the forgiveness of sin.

As it is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet, The voice of one crying in the wilderness [shouting in the desert]: Prepare the way of the Lord, make His beaten paths straight. Every valley and ravine shall be filled up, and every mountain and hill shall be leveled; and the crooked places shall be made straight, and the rough roads shall be made smooth; And all mankind shall see (behold and [c]understand and at last acknowledge) the salvation of God (the deliverance from eternal death [d]decreed by God).

So he said to the crowds who came out to be baptized by him, You offspring of vipers! Who [e]secretly warned you to flee from the coming wrath? Bear fruits that are deserving and consistent with [your] repentance [that is, [f]conduct worthy of a heart changed, a heart abhorring sin]. And do not begin to say to yourselves, We have Abraham as our father; for I tell you that God is able from these stones to raise up descendants for Abraham. Even now the ax is laid to the root of the trees, so that every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and cast into the fire.

10 And the multitudes asked him, Then what shall we do? 11 And he replied to them, He who has two tunics (undergarments), let him share with him who has none; and he who has food, let him do it the same way.

12 Even tax collectors came to be baptized, and they said to him, Teacher, what shall we do? 13 And he said to them, Exact and collect no more than the fixed amount appointed you.

14 Those serving as soldiers also asked him, And we, what shall we do? And he replied to them, Never demand or enforce [g]by terrifying people or by accusing wrongfully, and always be satisfied with your rations (supplies) and with your allowance (wages).

15 As the people were in suspense and waiting expectantly, and everybody reasoned and questioned in their hearts concerning John, whether he perhaps might be the Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One). 16 John answered them all by saying, I baptize you with water; but He Who is mightier than I is coming, the strap of Whose sandals I am not fit to unfasten. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire. 17 His winnowing shovel (fork) is in His hand to thoroughly clear and cleanse His [threshing] floor and to gather the wheat and store it in His granary, but the chaff He will burn with fire that cannot be extinguished.

18 So with many other [various] appeals and admonitions he preached the good news (the Gospel) to the people.

19 But Herod the tetrarch, who had been [repeatedly] told about his fault and reproved with rebuke [h]producing conviction by [John] for [having] Herodias, his brother’s wife, and for all the wicked things that Herod had done, 20 Added this to them all—that he shut up John in prison.

21 Now when all the people were baptized, and when Jesus also had been baptized, and [while He was still] praying, the [visible] heaven was opened 22 And the Holy Spirit descended upon Him in bodily form like a dove, and a voice came from heaven, saying, You are My Son, My Beloved! In You I am well pleased and find delight!

23 Jesus Himself, when He began [His ministry], was about thirty years of age, being the Son, as was supposed, of Joseph, the son of Heli, 24 The son of Matthat, the son of Levi, the son of Melchi, the son of Jannai, the son of Joseph, 25 The son of Mattathias, the son of Amos, the son of Nahum, the son of Esli, the son of Naggai, 26 The son of Maath, the son of Mattathias, the son of Semein, the son of Josech, the son of Joda, 27 The son of Joanan, the son of Rhesa, the son of Zerubbabel, the son of Shealtiel, the son of Neri, 28 The son of Melchi, the son of Addi, the son of Cosam, the son of Elmadam, the son of Er, 29 The son of Jesus, the son of Eliezer, the son of Jorim, the son of Matthat, the son of Levi, 30 The son of Simeon, the son of Judah, the son of Joseph, the son of Jonam, the son of Eliakim, 31 The son of Melea, the son of Menna, the son of Mattatha, the son of Nathan, the son of David, 32 The son of Jesse, the son of Obed, the son of Boaz, the son of Salmon (Sala), the son of Nahshon, 33 The son of Aminadab, the son of Admin, the son of Arni, the son of Hezron, the son of Perez, the son of Judah, 34 The son of Jacob, the son of Isaac, the son of Abraham, the son of Terah, the son of Nahor, 35 The son of Serug, the son of Reu, the son of Peleg, the son of Eber, the son of Shelah, 36 The son of Cainan, the son of Arphaxad, the son of Shem, the son of Noah, the son of Lamech, 37 The son of Methuselah, the son of Enoch, the son of Jared, the son of Mahalaleel, the son of Cainan, 38 The son of Enos, the son of Seth, the son of Adam, the son of God.

Luke 4

Then Jesus, full of and controlled by the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led in [by] the [Holy] Spirit For (during) forty days in the wilderness (desert), where He was tempted ([a]tried, tested exceedingly) by the devil. And He ate nothing during those days, and when they were completed, He was hungry.

Then the devil said to Him, If You are the Son of God, order this stone to turn into a loaf [of bread]. And Jesus replied to him, It is written, Man shall not live and be sustained by (on) bread alone [b]but by every word and expression of God.

Then the devil took Him up to a high mountain and showed Him all the kingdoms of the habitable world in a moment of time [[c]in the twinkling of an eye]. And he said to Him, To You I will give all this power and authority and their glory (all their magnificence, excellence, preeminence, dignity, and grace), for it has been turned over to me, and I give it to whomever I will. Therefore if You will do homage to and worship me [[d]just once], it shall all be Yours. And Jesus replied to him, [e]Get behind Me, Satan! It is written, You shall do homage to and worship the Lord your God, and Him only shall you serve.

Then he took Him to Jerusalem and set Him on [f]a gable of the temple, and said to Him, If You are the Son of God, cast Yourself down from here; 10 For it is written, He will give His angels charge over you to guard and watch over you closely and carefully; 11 And on their hands they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone. 12 And Jesus replied to him, [The Scripture] says, You shall not tempt (try, [g]test exceedingly) the Lord your God.

13 And when the devil had ended every [the complete cycle of] temptation, he [temporarily] left Him [that is, [h]stood off from Him] until another more opportune and favorable time.

14 Then Jesus went back full of and under the power of the [Holy] Spirit into Galilee, and the fame of Him spread through the whole region round about. 15 And He Himself conducted [[i]a course of] teaching in their synagogues, being [j]recognized and honored and praised by all.

16 So He came to Nazareth, [[k]that Nazareth] where He had been brought up, and He entered the synagogue, as was His custom on the Sabbath day. And He stood up to read. 17 And there was handed to Him [the roll of] the book of the prophet Isaiah. He opened (unrolled) the book and found the place where it was written, 18 The Spirit of the Lord [is] upon Me, because He has anointed Me [the Anointed One, the Messiah] to preach the good news (the Gospel) to the poor; He has sent Me to announce release to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to send forth as delivered those who are oppressed [who are downtrodden, bruised, crushed, and broken down by calamity], 19 To proclaim the accepted and acceptable year of the Lord [the day [l]when salvation and the free favors of God profusely abound].

20 Then He rolled up the book and gave it back to the attendant and sat down; and the eyes of all in the synagogue were gazing [attentively] at Him. 21 And He began to speak to them: Today this Scripture has been fulfilled [m]while you are present and hearing.

22 And all spoke well of Him and marveled at the words of grace that came forth from His mouth; and they said, Is not this Joseph’s [n]Son? 23 So He said to them, You will doubtless quote to Me this proverb: Physician, heal Yourself! What we have learned by hearsay that You did in Capernaum, do here also in Your [own] town.

24 Then He said, Solemnly I say to you, no prophet is acceptable and welcome in his [own] town (country). 25 But in truth I tell you, there were many widows in Israel in the days of Elijah, when the heavens were closed up for three years and six months, so that there came a great famine over all the land; 26 And yet Elijah was not sent to a single one of them, but only to Zarephath in the country of Sidon, to a woman who was a widow. 27 And there were many lepers in Israel in the time of Elisha the prophet, and yet not one of them was cleansed [by being healed]—but only Naaman the Syrian.

28 When they heard these things, all the people in the synagogue were filled with rage. 29 And rising up, they pushed and drove Him out of the town, and [laying hold of Him] they led Him to the [projecting] upper part of the hill on which their town was built, that they might hurl Him headlong down [over the cliff]. 30 But passing through their midst, He went on His way.

31 And He descended to Capernaum, a town of Galilee, and there He continued to teach the people on the Sabbath days. 32 And they were amazed at His teaching, for His word was with authority and ability and weight and power.

33 Now in the synagogue there was a man who was possessed by the foul spirit of a demon; and he cried out with a loud (deep, terrible) cry, 34 Ah, [o]let us alone! What have You to do with us [What have [p]we in common], Jesus of Nazareth? Have You come to destroy us? I know Who You are—the Holy One of God! 35 But Jesus rebuked him, saying, Be silent (muzzled, gagged), and come out of him! And when the demon had thrown the man down in their midst, he came out of him without injuring him in any [q]possible way. 36 And they were all amazed and said to one another, What kind of talk is this? For with authority and power He commands the foul spirits and they come out!

37 And a rumor about Him spread into every place in the surrounding country.

38 Then He arose and left the synagogue and went into Simon’s (Peter’s) house. Now Simon’s mother-in-law was suffering in the grip of a burning fever, and they pleaded with Him for her. 39 And standing over her, He rebuked the fever, and it left her; and immediately she got up and began waiting on them.

40 Now at the setting of the sun [indicating the end of the Sabbath], all those who had any [who were] sick with various diseases brought them to Him, and He laid His hands upon every one of them and cured them. 41 And demons even came out of many people, screaming and crying out, You are the Son of God! But He rebuked them and would not permit them to speak, because they knew that He was the Christ (the Messiah).

42 And when daybreak came, He left [Peter’s house] and went into an isolated [desert] place. And the people looked for Him until they came up to Him and tried to prevent Him from leaving them.

43 But He said to them, I must preach the good news (the Gospel) of the kingdom of God to the other cities [and towns] also, for I was sent for this [purpose].

44 And He continued to preach in the synagogues of Galilee.

And all God’s people said “Amen”

#lessonsfromlent

God has so bombarded me with His great and unsearchable riches that a blog will not contain it all! He has taken me on quite the ride with John the Baptist and His Divine Cousin. . . and I am certain He has not finished with it yet. For now, I will share with you that I believe that John, whose lineage is clearly the Levitical priesthood, is the personification of the Levitical Law preparing the way for the Great High Priest and the New Covenant. The things God unveiled are nothing short of astounding and I said to my Nehemiah Man this morning, I am sure that people smarter than me have long known these wonderful truths but I am so happy God gives me the thrill of taking my hand in His and leading me there with no one but Him.

So while the many things God has set my heart and soul pondering have not come to enough fruition to share with clarity, there is one concept that I would like to encourage you with from the reading. Before I do, I’d like to remind you why I began “Lessons from Lent” . . . to be so blunt, I was feeling desolate as if Jesus had forgotten me.  I declared to you and to the heavenlies that I was not going to give into the despair but that I would fight the good fight of faith and trust that God had brought me to such an empty place so that He could fill me afresh. Well Sister, that’s exactly what He has done.

And as I read through the passages this morning with my heart quickened to the similar situations of John the Baptist and Jesus, my eyes fell upon where they were before they began their public ministry . . . the desert. As I rolled that over in my head, the Israelites time of wandering before they entered the Promised Land crept into my mind—where had they wandered? . . .the desert.

So, we have the Israelites led into the desert to “be humbled, to be proved, and to be tested” before God brought them to the Promised Land. Maybe there was some Egyptian thinking they needed to let go. Maybe there was some slave mentality that needed to be routed out. Maybe they needed to wander a while collecting the manna and the quail to believe the reality of God providing for their every need. I don’t know the specific lessons God had for them but I know that He loved them enough to be certain they did.

Then we see John the Baptist, the one Isaiah foretold, the one who would lay down the path for the Messiah. He lived in the desert until “the word of God came to John, son of Zechariah” and called him forth so the descendant of Aaron, the priest, could make way for the offspring of David, the king. I’m not sure how God prepared John to be so bold and carry out the good works set apart in advance for him to do but we know for certain that God supplied everything he needed to emerge from the desert fully equipped.

And then we find Jesus, in the desert, full of the Holy Spirit battling evil. Defeating every temptation the Tempter laid before Him and emerging as the Victor. Triumphing over the enemy and declaring with an exclamation point that His faith would not be shaken by His circumstance nor would He doubt the Lord His God to deliver Him.

Don’t read those descriptions too quickly. Let the necessity of the time in the desert fall on you. Let the blessing of testing, preparation, and triumph wash over you. The desert preceded the Promised Land. The desert was the perfect background for preparation and provision. And the desert hosted triumph in the battle.

Here’s my thought on this . . . God brings His people through the wandering and into the Promised Land. He sends us forth from the desert equipped for the good work we have to do. And if we will fight the good fight, I fully believe that in the Name of Jesus we will emerge in triumph.

So while we may find ourselves slogging through the sands of the desert for a season Beloved . . . Be of strong heart, He has not forgotten us! Do not give up! Be very brave and very courageous because on the other side of the sand lies a beautiful thing.

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On the other side of the sand lies . . . a beautiful thing. #lessonsfromlent

Lessons from Lent: Day Eight

26 Feb

creation swap lessons from lent coffee cup Kelly Sikkema 22940

An Explanation of Lessons from Lent

In the next 40 days (33 now because you have already accomplished seven), the weeks leading up to Easter, the posts on Glimpsed Glory will be different. I am reading through the New Testament during this time and I am hoping the Holy Spirit will lead me to a fresh revelation each and every day. I’m going into it with a prayerful heart and an expectant spirit but I will fully confess to you that my soul feels sluggish.

I have been in a place of exhaustion over these last months. My mind has been clouded, my body has ached and insomnia has been my companion since late December. The enemy has been and is still whispering in my ear that my Jesus has forgotten me . . . that He has finally tired of my imperfections and left me behind.

I’m not giving in to it! I am going to fight the good fight of faith and follow the example of my Nehemiah Man. I am going to stand firm in my faith because if I do not, I will not stand at all. I’m praising God for bringing me to a place of emptiness so that I can look to Him to fill my cup.

I’m coming before the Lord and I’m asking Him to do a new thing in me. To rouse my heart to His side and to draw me near in real and tangible ways. To plow through the fog that has settled over me in the form of health issues, physical stress, and emotional upheaval and lay a level path before me. I’m entering the throne room and I’m humbly reminding Him that He has invited me to come in my time of need. O Lord – be near to me. Love me where I am. Take me where I need to be.

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That’s the cry of my heart Sweet Sister and I’m thinking that if I am in this place that perhaps you are too. It might be that different life situations have brought us here but here we are. If that’s the case, I want you to know that you are not alone and that you have a faith sister to walk through it with. We can do this together – you and I. It’s why God gave us to one another. We can join our hearts and we can offer up the next 40 days to the Beautiful One and trust Him to do the beautiful thing in us.

So here’s what I’ll do. I’ll post the daily reading on the blog (except for Sundays) and if you read the Scriptures not only will you have read through the entire New Testament by Easter but God promises that He’ll show you deep and unsearchable things you do not know. He promises that His word is alive and active and will transform your heart. I could use some transformation. What about you?

At the end of the daily passage, I’m going to share my “Lesson from Lent” – nothing long or drawn out just something that God uses to speak straight to my heart from the Scripture that day. I’m putting it at the end because if your time runs short on a particular day – I want you to skip reading my words, not His.

I’m hoping that you’ll start your own running record of what God is showing you. Maybe you’ll even be moved to leave a comment so your Sisters can glean from what you’re learning. No matter how you choose to keep track of all He shares with you . . . treasure it up in your heart Sweet One, meditate on it, mull it over, consider the whisper of the Lover of your soul. The God of the Universe is the only Voice we need to revive our tired souls. So, let’s you and I lean in close, pray for ears to hear and hearts to respond. Let’s dig in to the riches He has given us and prepare to be amazed by what He will reveal to our expectant hearts. O Sister, let’s boldly ask Him for a lesson from Lent and then brace ourselves for a glimpse of Glory!

Day Eight

February 26, 2015 ~~ Mark 12-16

Amplified Bible

Footnotes: I’ve left the footnotes in place if you would like to track down sources in word study and language. Please follow the link to each chapter and scroll to the bottom of the passage.

Mark 12

And [Jesus] started to speak to them in parables [with comparisons and illustrations]. A man planted a vineyard and put a hedge around it and dug a pit for the winepress and built a tower and let it out [for rent] to vinedressers and went into another country. When the season came, he sent a bond servant to the tenants to collect from them some of the fruit of the vineyard. But they took him and beat him and sent him away without anything. Again he sent to them another bond servant, and they stoned him and wounded him in the head and treated him shamefully [sending him away with insults]. And he sent another, and that one they killed; then many others—some they beat, and some they put to death. He had still one left [to send], a beloved son; last of all he sent him to them, saying, They will respect my son. But those tenants said to one another, Here is the heir; come on, let us put him to death, and [then] the inheritance will be ours. And they took him and killed him, and threw [his body] outside the vineyard. Now what will the owner of the vineyard do? He will come and destroy the tenants, and give the vineyard to others. 10 Have you not even read this [passage of] Scripture: The very Stone which [[a]after putting It to the test] the builders rejected has become the Head of the corner [Cornerstone]; 11 This is from the Lord and is His doing, and it is marvelous in our eyes?

12 And they were trying to get hold of Him, but they were afraid of the people, for they knew that He spoke this parable with reference to and against them. So they left Him and departed.

13 But they sent some of the Pharisees and of the Herodians to Him for the purpose of entrapping Him in His speech. 14 And they came up and said to Him, Teacher, we know that You are [b]sincere and what You profess to be, that You cannot lie, and that You have no personal bias for anyone; for You are not influenced by partiality and have no [c]regard for anyone’s external condition or position, but in [and on the basis of] truth You teach the way of God. Is it lawful (permissible and right) to give tribute ([d]poll taxes) to Caesar or not? 15 Should we pay [them] or should we not pay [them]? But knowing their hypocrisy, He asked them, Why do you put Me to the test? Bring Me a coin (a denarius), so I may see it. 16 And they brought [Him one]. Then He asked them, Whose image (picture) is this? And whose superscription ([e]title)? They said to Him, Caesar’s. 17 Jesus said to them, Pay to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s and to [f]God the things that are God’s. And they [g]stood marveling and greatly amazed at Him.

18 And [some] Sadducees came to Him, [of that party] who say there is no resurrection, and they asked Him a question, saying, 19 Teacher, Moses gave us [a law] that if a man’s brother died, leaving a wife but no child, the man must marry the widow and raise up offspring for his brother. 20 Now there were seven brothers; the first one took a wife and died, leaving no children. 21 And the second [brother] married her, and died, leaving no children; and the third did the same; 22 And all seven, leaving no children. Last of all, the woman died also. 23 Now in the resurrection, whose wife will she be? For the seven were married to her. 24 Jesus said to them, Is not this where you wander out of the way and go wrong, because you know neither the Scriptures nor the power of God? 25 For when they arise from among the dead, [men] do not marry nor are [women] given in marriage, but are like the angels in heaven. 26 But concerning the dead being raised—have you not read in the book of Moses, [in the passage] about the [burning] bush, how God said to him, I am the God of Abraham and the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob? 27 He is not the God of [the] dead, but of [the] living! You are very wrong.

28 Then one of the scribes came up and listened to them disputing with one another, and, noticing that Jesus answered them fitly and admirably, he asked Him, Which commandment is first and most important of all [[h]in its nature]? 29 Jesus answered, The first and principal one of all commands is: Hear, O Israel, The Lord our God is one Lord; 30 And you shall love the Lord your God [i]out of and with your whole heart and out of and with all your soul (your [j]life) and out of and with all your mind (with [k]your faculty of thought and your moral understanding) and out of and with all your strength. [l]This is the first and principal commandment. 31 The second is like it and is this, You shall love your neighbor as yourself. There is no other commandment greater than these.

32 And the scribe said to Him, Excellently and fitly and admirably answered, Teacher! You have said truly that He is One, and there is no other but Him; 33 And to love Him out of and with all the heart and with all the understanding [with the [m]faculty of quick apprehension and intelligence and keenness of discernment] and with all the strength, and to love one’s neighbor as oneself, is much more than all the whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.

34 And when Jesus saw that he answered intelligently (discreetly and [n]having his wits about him), He said to him, You are not far from the kingdom of God. And after that no one ventured or dared to ask Him any further question.

35 And as Jesus taught in [a [o]porch or court of] the temple, He said, How can the scribes say that the Christ is David’s Son? 36 David himself, [inspired] in the Holy Spirit, declared, The Lord said to my Lord, Sit at My right hand until I make Your enemies [a footstool] under Your feet. 37 David himself calls Him Lord; so how can it be that He is his Son? Now the great mass of the people heard [Jesus] gladly [listening to Him with delight].

38 And in [the course of] His teaching, He said, Beware of the scribes, who like to go around in long robes and [to get] greetings in the marketplaces [public forums], 39 And [have] the front seats in the synagogues and the [p]chief couches (places of honor) at feasts, 40 Who devour widows’ houses and to cover it up make long prayers. They will receive the heavier [sentence of] condemnation.

41 And He sat down opposite the treasury and saw how the crowd was casting money into the treasury. Many rich [people] were throwing in large sums. 42 And a widow who was poverty-stricken came and put in two copper mites [the smallest of coins], which together make [q]half of a cent. 43 And He called His disciples [to Him] and said to them, Truly and surely I tell you, this widow, [she who is] poverty-stricken, has put in more than all those contributing to the treasury. 44 For they all threw in out of their abundance; but she, out of her deep poverty, has put in everything that she had—[even] all she had on which to live.

Mark 13

And as [Jesus] was coming out of the temple [[a]area], one of His disciples said to Him, Look, Teacher! Notice the sort and quality of these stones and buildings! And Jesus replied to him, You see these great buildings? There will not be left here one stone upon another that will not be loosened and torn down. And as He sat on the Mount of Olives opposite the temple [[b]enclosure], Peter and James and John and Andrew asked Him privately, Tell us when is this to take place and what will be the sign when these things, all [of them], are about to be accomplished?

And Jesus began to tell them, Be careful and watchful that no one misleads you [about it]. Many will come in [[c]appropriating to themselves] the name [of Messiah] which belongs to Me [[d]basing their claims on the use of My name], saying, I am [He]! And they will mislead many. And when you hear of wars and rumors of wars, do not get alarmed (troubled and frightened); it is necessary [that these things] take place, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be earthquakes in various places; there will be famines and calamities. This is but the beginning of the [e]intolerable anguish and suffering [only the first of the [f]birth pangs].

But look to yourselves; for they will turn you over to councils, and you will be beaten in the synagogues, and you will stand before governors and kings for My sake as a testimony to them. 10 And the good news (the Gospel) must first be preached to all nations. 11 Now when they take you [to court] and put you under arrest, do not be anxious beforehand about what you are to say [g]nor [even] meditate about it; but say whatever is given you in that hour and at [h]the moment, for it is not you who will be speaking, but the Holy Spirit.

12 And brother will hand over brother to death, and the father his child; and children will take a stand against their parents and [have] them put to death. 13 And you will be hated and detested by everybody for My name’s sake, but he who patiently perseveres and endures to the end will be saved ([i]made a partaker of the salvation by Christ, and delivered [j]from spiritual death).

14 But when you see the abomination of desolation mentioned by Daniel the prophet standing where it ought not to be—[and] let the one who reads take notice and consider and understand and heed [this]—then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. 15 Let him who is on the housetop not go down into the house nor go inside to take anything out of his house; 16 And let him who is in the field not turn back again to get his mantle (cloak). 17 And alas for those who are pregnant and for those who have nursing babies in those days!

18 Pray that it may not occur in winter, 19 For at that time there will be such affliction (oppression and tribulation) as has not been from the beginning of the creation which God created until this particular time—and [k]positively never will be [again]. 20 And unless the Lord had shortened the days, no human being would be saved (rescued); but for the sake of the elect, His chosen ones (those whom He [l]picked out for Himself), He has shortened the days.

21 And then if anyone says to you, See, here is the Christ (the Messiah)! or, Look, there He is! do not believe it. 22 False Christs (Messiahs) and false prophets will arise and show signs and [work] miracles to deceive and lead astray, if possible, even the elect (those God has chosen out for Himself). 23 But look to yourselves and be on your guard; I have told you everything beforehand.

24 But in those days, after [the affliction and oppression and distress of] that tribulation, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; 25 And the stars will be falling from the sky, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken. 26 And then they will see the Son of Man coming in clouds with great (kingly) power and glory (majesty and splendor). 27 And then He will send out the angels and will gather together His elect (those He has [m]picked out for Himself) from the four winds, from the farthest bounds of the earth to the farthest bounds of heaven.

28 Now learn a lesson from the fig tree: as soon as its branch becomes tender and it puts forth its leaves, you recognize and know that summer is near. 29 So also, when you see these things happening, you may recognize and know that He is near, at [the very] door. 30 Surely I say to you, this generation ([n]the whole multitude of people living at that one time) positively will not perish or pass away before all these things take place. 31 Heaven and earth will perish and pass away, but My words will not perish or pass away.

32 But of that day or that hour not a [single] person knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.

33 Be on your guard [constantly alert], and watch [o]and pray; for you do not know when the time will come. 34 It is like a man [[p]already] going on a journey; when he leaves home, he puts his servants in charge, each with his particular task, and he gives orders to the doorkeeper to be constantly alert and on the watch. 35 Therefore watch (give strict attention, be cautious and alert), for you do not know when the Master of the house is coming—in the evening, or at midnight, or at cockcrowing, or in the morning— 36 [Watch, I say] lest He come suddenly and unexpectedly and find you asleep.37 And what I say to you I say to everybody: Watch (give strict attention, be cautious, active, and alert)!

Mark 14

It was now two days before the Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread, and the chief priests and the scribes were all the while seeking to arrest [Jesus] by secrecy and deceit and put [Him] to death, For they kept saying, It must not be during the Feast, for fear that there might be a riot of the people.

And while He was in Bethany, [a guest] in the house of Simon the leper, as He was reclining [at table], a woman came with an alabaster jar of ointment ([a]perfume) of pure nard, very costly and precious; and she broke the jar and poured [the perfume] over His head.

But there were some who were moved with indignation and said to themselves, To what purpose was the ointment ([b]perfume) thus wasted? For it was possible to have sold this [perfume] for more than 300 denarii [a laboring man’s wages for a year] and to have given [the money] to the poor. And they censured and reproved her.

But Jesus said, Let her alone; why are you troubling her? She has done a good and beautiful thing to Me [praiseworthy and noble]. For you always have the poor with you, and whenever you wish you can do good to them; but you will not always have Me. She has done what she could; she came beforehand to anoint My body for the burial. And surely I tell you, wherever the good news (the Gospel) is proclaimed in the entire world, what she has done will be told in memory of her.

10 Then Judas Iscariot, who was one of the Twelve [apostles], went off to the chief priests in order to betray and hand Him over to them. 11 And when they heard it, they rejoiced and were delighted, and they promised to give him money. And he [busying himself continually] sought an opportunity to betray Him.

12 On the first day [of the Feast] of Unleavened Bread, when [as was customary] they killed the Passover lamb, [Jesus’] disciples said to Him, Where do You wish us to go [and] prepare the Passover [supper] for You to eat? 13 And He sent two of His disciples and said to them, Go into the city, and a man carrying an [earthen] jar or pitcher of water will meet you; follow him. 14 And whatever [house] he enters, say to the master of the house, The Teacher says: Where is My guest room, where I may eat the Passover [supper] with My disciples? 15 And he will [himself] show you a large upper room, furnished [with carpets and with dining couches properly spread] and ready; there prepare for us. 16 Then the disciples set out and came to the city and found [everything] just as He had told them; and they prepared the Passover.

17 And when it was evening, He came with the Twelve [apostles]. 18 And while they were at the table eating, Jesus said, Surely I say to you, one of you will betray Me, [one] who is eating [here] with Me. 19 And they began to show that they were sad and hurt, and to say to Him one after another, Is it I? or, It is not I, is it? 20 He replied to them, It is one of the Twelve [apostles], one who is dipping [bread] into the [same deep] dish with Me. 21 For the Son of Man is going as it stands written concerning Him; but woe to that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed! It would have been good (profitable and wholesome) for that man if he had never been born.

22 And while they were eating, He took a loaf [of bread], praised God and gave thanks and asked Him to bless it to their use. [Then] He broke [it] and gave to them and said, Take. Eat. This is My body. 23 He also took a cup [of the juice of grapes], and when He had given thanks, He gave [it] to them, and they all drank of it. 24 And He said to them, This is My blood [which ratifies] the new covenant, [the blood] which is being poured out for (on account of) many. 25 Solemnly and surely I tell you, I shall not again drink of the fruit of the vine till that day when I drink it [c]of a new and a higher quality in God’s kingdom.

26 And when they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives. 27 And Jesus said to them, You will all fall away this night [that is, you will be caused to stumble and will begin to distrust and desert Me], for it stands written, I will strike the Shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered. 28 But after I am raised [to life], I will go before you into Galilee.

29 But Peter said to Him, Even if they all fall away and are caused to stumble and distrust and desert You, yet I will not [do so]! 30 And Jesus said to him, Truly I tell you, this very night, before a cock crows twice, you will utterly deny Me [disclaiming all connection with Me] three times. 31 But [Peter] said more vehemently and repeatedly, [Even] if it should be necessary for me to die with You, I will not deny or disown You! And they all kept saying the same thing.

32 Then they went to a place called Gethsemane, and He said to His disciples, Sit down here while I pray. 33 And He took with Him Peter and James and John, and began to be [d]struck with terror and amazement and deeply troubled and depressed. 34 And He said to them, My soul is exceedingly sad (overwhelmed with grief) so that it almost kills Me! Remain here and keep awake and be watching.

35 And going a little farther, He fell on the ground and kept praying that if it were possible the [[e]fatal] hour might pass from Him. 36 And He was saying, Abba, [which means] Father, everything is possible for You. Take away this cup from Me; yet not what I will, but what You [will].

37 And He came back and found them sleeping, and He said to Peter, Simon, are you asleep? Have you not the strength to keep awake and watch [with Me for] one hour? 38 Keep awake and watch and pray [constantly], that you may not enter into temptation; the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.

39 He went away again and prayed, saying the same words. 40 And again He came back and found them sleeping, for their eyes were very heavy; and they did not know what answer to give Him.

41 And He came back a third time and said to them, Are you still sleeping and resting? It is enough [of that]! The hour has come. The Son of Man is betrayed into the hands of sinful men (men [f]whose way or nature is to act in opposition to God). 42 Get up, let us be going! See, My betrayer is at hand!

43 And at once, while He was still speaking, Judas came, one of the Twelve [apostles], and with him a crowd of men with swords and clubs, [who came] from the chief priests and the scribes and the elders [of the Sanhedrin]. 44 Now the betrayer had given them a signal, saying, The One I shall kiss is [the Man]; seize Him and lead [Him] away safely [so as to prevent His escape]. 45 And when he came, he went up to Jesus immediately and said, Master! Master! and he [g]embraced Him and kissed Him fervently. 46 And they threw their hands on Him and arrested Him.

47 But one of the bystanders drew his sword and struck the bond servant of the high priest and cut off his ear. 48 And Jesus said to them, Have you come out with swords and clubs as [you would] against a robber to capture Me? 49 I was with you daily in the temple [[h]porches and courts] teaching, and you did not seize Me; but [this has happened] that the Scriptures might be fulfilled.

50 Then [His disciples], forsaking Him, fled, all [of them]. 51 And a young man was following Him, with nothing but a linen cloth ([i]sheet) thrown about [his] naked [body]; and they laid hold of him, 52 But, leaving behind the linen cloth ([j]sheet), he fled from them naked. 53 And they led Jesus away to the high priest, and all the chief priests and the elders and the scribes were gathered together.

54 And Peter followed Him at a distance, even right into the courtyard of the high priest. And he was sitting [[k]in the firelight] with the guards and warming himself at the fire.

55 Now the chief priests and the entire council (the Sanhedrin) were constantly seeking [to get] testimony against Jesus with a view to condemning Him and putting Him to death, but they did not find any. 56 For many were repeatedly bearing false witness against Him, but their testimonies did not agree. 57 And some stood up and were bearing false witness against Him, saying, 58 We heard Him say, I will destroy this temple (sanctuary) which is made with hands, and in three days I will build another, made without hands. 59 Still not even [in this] did their testimony agree.

60 And the high priest stood up in the midst and asked Jesus, Have You not even one answer to make? What [about this which] these [men] are testifying against You? 61 But He kept still and did not answer at all. Again the high priest asked Him, Are You the Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One), the Son of the Blessed?

62 And Jesus said, I Am; and you will [all] see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of Power ([l]the Almighty) and coming on the clouds of heaven.

63 Then the high priest tore his garments and said, What need have we for more witnesses? 64 You have heard His blasphemy. What is your decision? And they all condemned Him as being guilty and deserving of death. 65 And some of them began to spit on Him and to blindfold Him and to strike Him with their fists, saying to Him, Prophesy! And the guards received Him with blows and by slapping Him.

66 While Peter was down below in the courtyard, one of the [serving] maids of the high priest came; 67 And when she saw Peter warming himself, she gazed intently at him and said, You were with Jesus of Nazareth too. 68 But he denied it [m]falsely and disowned Him, saying, I neither know nor understand what you say. Then he went outside [the courtyard and was] into the [n]vestibule. [o]And a cock crowed.

69 And the maidservant saw him, and began again to say to the bystanders, This [man] is [one] of them. 70 But again he denied it [p]falsely and disowned Him. And after a short while, again the bystanders said to Peter, [q]Really, you are one of them, for you are a Galilean [r]and your dialect shows it. 71 Then he commenced invoking a curse on himself [should he not be telling the truth] and swearing, I do not know the Man about Whom you are talking!

72 And at once for the second time a cock crowed. And Peter remembered how Jesus said to him, Before a cock crows twice, you will [s]utterly deny Me [disclaiming all connection with Me] three times. And [t]having put his thought upon it [and remembering], he broke down and wept aloud and [u]lamented.

Mark 15

And immediately when it was morning, the chief priests, with the elders and scribes and the whole council, held a consultation; and when they had bound Jesus, they took Him away [[a]violently] and handed Him over to Pilate. And Pilate inquired of Him, Are You the King of the Jews? And He replied, It is as you say.

And the chief priests kept accusing Him of many things. And Pilate again asked Him, Have [b]You no answer to make? See how many charges they are bringing against You! But Jesus made no further answer at all, so that Pilate wondered and marveled.

Now at the Feast he [was accustomed to] set free for them any one prisoner whom they requested. And among the rioters in the prison who had committed murder in the insurrection there was a man named Barabbas. And the throng came up and began asking Pilate to do as he usually did for them. And he replied to them, Do you wish me to set free for you the King of the Jews? 10 For he was aware that it was [[c]because they were prompted] by envy that the chief priests had delivered Him up.

11 But the chief priests stirred up the crowd to get him to release for them Barabbas instead. 12 And again Pilate said to them, Then what shall I do with the Man Whom you call the King of the Jews? 13 And they shouted back again, Crucify Him!

14 But Pilate said to them, Why? What has He done that is evil? But they shouted with all their might all the more, Crucify Him [[d]at once]!

15 So Pilate, wishing to satisfy the crowd, set Barabbas free for them; and after having Jesus whipped, he handed [Him] over to be crucified.

16 Then the soldiers led Him away to the courtyard inside the palace, that is, the Praetorium, and they called the entire detachment of soldiers together. 17 And they dressed Him in [a] purple [robe], and, weaving together a crown of thorns, they placed it on Him. 18 And they began to salute Him, Hail (greetings, good health to You, long life to You), King of the Jews! 19 And they struck His head with a staff made of a [bamboo-like] reed and spat on Him and kept bowing their knees in homage to Him. 20 And when they had [finished] making sport of Him, they took the purple [robe] off of Him and put His own clothes on Him. And they led Him out [of the city] to crucify Him.21 And they forced a passerby, Simon of Cyrene, the father of Alexander and Rufus, who was coming in from the field (country), to carry His cross.

22 And they led Him to Golgotha [in Latin: Calvary], meaning The Place of a Skull. 23 And they [attempted to] give Him wine mingled with myrrh, but He would not take it.

24 And they crucified Him; and they divided His garments and distributed them among themselves, throwing lots for them to decide who should take what.

25 And it was the third hour (about nine o’clock in the morning) when they crucified Him. 26 And the inscription of the accusation against Him was written above, The King of the Jews.

27 And with Him they crucified two robbers, one on [His] right hand and one on His left. 28 [e]And the Scripture was fulfilled which says, He was counted among the transgressors.

29 And those who passed by kept reviling Him and reproaching Him abusively in harsh and insolent language, wagging their heads and saying, Aha! You Who would destroy the temple and build it in three days, 30 Now rescue [f]Yourself [[g]from death], coming down from the cross!

31 So also the chief priests, with the scribes, made sport of Him to one another, saying, He rescued others [[h]from death]; Himself He is unable to rescue. 32 Let the Christ (the Messiah), the King of Israel, come down now from the cross, that we may see [it] and trust in and rely on Him and adhere to Him! Those who were crucified with Him also reviled and reproached Him [speaking abusively, harshly, and insolently].

33 And when the sixth hour (about midday) had come, there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour (about three o’clock). 34 And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?—which means, My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me [[i]deserting Me and leaving Me helpless and abandoned]?

35 And some of those standing by, [and] hearing it, said, See! He is calling Elijah! 36 And one man ran, and, filling a sponge with vinegar (a [j]mixture of sour wine and water), put it on a staff made of a [bamboo-like] reed and gave it to Him to drink, saying, Hold off! Let us see whether Elijah [does] come to take Him down.

37 And Jesus uttered a loud cry, and breathed out His life. 38 And the curtain [of the Holy of Holies] of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom.

39 And when the centurion who stood facing Him saw Him expire this way, he said, [k]Really, this Man was God’s Son!

40 Now some women were there also, looking on from a distance, among whom were Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James the younger and of Joses, and Salome, 41 Who, when [Jesus] was in Galilee, were in the habit of accompanying and ministering to Him; and [there were] also many other [women] who had come up with Him to Jerusalem.

42 As evening had already come, since it was the day of Preparation, that is, [the day] before the Sabbath, 43 Joseph, he of Arimathea, noble and honorable in rank and a respected member of the council (Sanhedrin), who was himself waiting for the kingdom of God, daring the consequences, took courage and ventured to go to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. 44 But Pilate wondered whether He was dead so soon, and, having called the centurion, he asked him whether [Jesus] was already dead. 45 And when he learned from the centurion [that He was indeed dead], he gave the body to Joseph. 46 And Joseph bought a [fine] linen cloth [[l]for swathing dead bodies], and, taking Him down from the cross, he [m]rolled Him up in the [fine] linen cloth and placed Him in a tomb which had been hewn out of a rock. Then he rolled a [very large] stone against the door of the tomb.

47 And Mary Magdalene and Mary [the mother] of Joses were [[n]attentively] observing where He was laid.

Mark 16

And when the Sabbath was past [that is, after the sun had set], Mary Magdalene, and Mary [the mother] of James, and Salome purchased sweet-smelling spices, so that they might go and anoint [Jesus’ body].

And very early on the first day of the week they came to the tomb; [by then] the sun had risen. And they said to one another, Who will roll back the stone for us out of [the groove across the floor at] the door of the tomb? And when they looked up, they [distinctly] saw that the stone was already rolled back, for it was very large.

And going into the tomb, they saw a young man sitting [there] on the right [side], clothed in a [[a]long, stately, sweeping] robe of white, and they were utterly amazed and struck with terror. And he said to them, Do not be amazed and terrified; you are looking for Jesus of Nazareth, Who was crucified. He has risen; He is not here. See the place where they laid Him.

But be going; tell the disciples and Peter, He goes before you into Galilee; you will see Him there, [just] as He told you. Then they went out [and] fled from the tomb, for trembling and bewilderment and consternation had seized them. And they said nothing about it to anyone, for they were held by alarm and fear.

9 [b]Now Jesus, having risen [[c]from death] early on the first day of the week, appeared first to Mary Magdalene, from whom He had driven out seven demons. 10 She went and reported it to those who had been with Him, as they grieved and wept. 11 And when they heard that He was alive and that she had seen Him, they did not believe it.

12 After this, He appeared in a different form to two of them as they were walking [along the way] into the country. 13 And they returned [to Jerusalem] and told the others, but they did not believe them either.

14 Afterward He appeared to the Eleven [apostles themselves] as they reclined at table; and He reproved and reproached them for their unbelief (their lack of faith) and their hardness of heart, because they had refused to believe those who had seen Him and looked at Him attentively after He had risen [[d]from death]. 15 And He said to them, Go into all the world and preach and publish openly the good news (the Gospel) to every creature [of the whole [e]human race].

16 He who believes [who adheres to and trusts in and relies on the Gospel and Him Whom it sets forth] and is baptized will be saved [[f]from the penalty of eternal death]; but he who does not believe [who does not adhere to and trust in and rely on the Gospel and Him Whom it sets forth] will be condemned. 17 And these attesting signs will accompany those who believe: in My name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new languages; 18 They will pick up serpents; and [even] if they drink anything deadly, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will get well.

19 So then the Lord Jesus, after He had spoken to them, was taken up into heaven and He sat down at the right hand of God.

20 And they went out and preached everywhere, while the Lord kept working with them and confirming the message by the attesting signs and miracles that closely accompanied [it]. Amen (so be it).

And with a holy hush the Women of God breathe the “Amen”

#lessonsfromlent

My Sweet Sister on the other side of this screen, I am praying for you that God overshadows you with a sense of His holiness, His majesty, and His fierceness. Reading these passages from Mark has humbled me so and I pray you find yourself in a similar place.

Seeing the face of the widow in my mind’s eye brought tears to the corner of my eyes and a lump to my throat. God let me keenly view her and her life circumstance—perhaps still grieving the death of her husband, perhaps years of loss etched on her face, keenly aware that she was alone to provide for herself—giving not from abundance but from a place of full reliance on Him as she dropped the coins in the box. I want to be the woman that even when life might be difficult is still brave enough to give it all. And I praise Him that my desire in that matches His and my Blessed Potter will continue to work with this lump of clay.

But the beauty of the widow, as powerful as it was, was not the passage that drove me to my knees to weep before the Throne this morning. To be embraced in His Presence and experience the fall of the Holy Spirit with such tenderness, such holy force and such awareness of Him. I’m asking God as I write to do the same for you Beloved and open your eyes with a fresh connection to your Jesus.

As I read these historical, real-life accounts the stark abandonment of Christ and the rejection He suffered landed pointedly on my soul. I always have difficulty reading the passages of His humiliation and the mocking insults thrown at Him. They make my heart wince. I feel sadness every time my eyes fall on “My God, My God, Why have You forsaken me?” and I did experience the same sense of quiet amazement I often do as He gave up His life and surrendered in obedience. But this time . . . God let me see from another vantage point.

He showed me so clearly the desertion of the disciples – not unnamed, unknown, unattached people from the crowd – but the apostles, the ones He called by name. His chosen brothers. The ones He ate with, travelled with, shared with . . .the ones He held close and that had professed to do the same toward Him. . . they fell away.

Peter, setting himself apart, declaring to follow Him even unto death, standing at a distance . . .chose to be comfortable and warm himself by the fire while the torture of Christ occurred.

Judas, the betrayer, handed Him over with a kiss . . . a mock sign of affection.

And then He was seized, not by the hands of strangers but by His own people. The very ones He had come for and it was this mob of the ones His heart loved that spat on Him, that blindfolded and mocked Him, struck Him with their fists, and delivered Him to be condemned.

Being delivered to Pilate, it was not the Romans Christ would have heard roaring for His crucifixion. No, the Lion of Judah’s heart would have been pierced by the calls from the people of God.

The force of the abandonment, the loneliness, and the grief had to be so overwhelming.

But still He continued to go where God had called Him. Full of mercy, full of grace, full of love . . . to the Place of a Skull. His own people lining the streets, jeering His life and demanding His death.

And this is what fell on my heart today . . .

the world that was watching God’s children—behaved just like them!

Those who had been observing Christ from a distance, eating the fish on the mountain, on the shore as He spoke from the boat . . . they were not the ones to run from the side of Messiah. They were not the ones to leave Him friendless before the mob. Those He had chosen to be fishers of men, those He had called with love—they all fell away.

And while the weight of the Crucifixion loomed and the nails were prepared for His hands—Peter warmed his by the fire.

The Roman soldiers were not the first to mock Christ and demand with blows that He prophesy. They were not the forerunners in mocking Him with feigned homage—His own people had led the way.

It wasn’t Pilate who condemned Christ to death. He did not set His tortured feet on the Via Dolorosa. His chosen ones shouting “Crucify Him!” paved the path before Him. The ones He was sent for—their voices pierced the air with the death call.

These are the things that made my soul ache as I realized that if I do not honor and love my Jesus, my Savior, the Lover of my Soul with everything I am—just like the widow—neither will a watching world.

If we who profess to be lovers of Christ, followers of the Messiah, choose to feign our homage to Him what do we expect a watching world to do? If we, who have been summoned by name, value our comfort over our Christ why would we expect those who do not claim His Name to do any different?

Do you see the lesson He has unfolded? Do you see that you and I must love the Lord our God with all our hearts, with all our souls, and with all our strength if we are to have any hope of leading a world to Him?

And as we consider the full out, full throttle life for Jesus we have no judgment for our faith forerunners because we know in our heart of hearts . . . we are them.

  • We are the ones who fall away.
  • We are the ones who choose our comfort.
  • We are those who surround Him with feigned homage.
  • And we are those who blend our voices with the jeering crowd.

Sisters, this cannot be so. We must give from our poverty, not only from our abundance. Our worship must be real – in spirit and in truth. We must be the voices that now pierce the air with the cry of Life! Life! And we must choose Christ over comfort.

The people of the world are watching to see us love Him, not when it’s comfortable, but even when it’s not. They are waiting to hear us proclaim there is NONE LIKE HIM. They ache to know that HE IS WORTHY!

Girlfriend, what will we show them today?

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HE IS WORTHY!  #lessonsfromlent

 

Lessons from Lent: Day Seven

25 Feb

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An Explanation of Lessons from Lent

In the next 40 days (34 now because you have already accomplished six), the weeks leading up to Easter, the posts on Glimpsed Glory will be different. I am reading through the New Testament during this time and I am hoping the Holy Spirit will lead me to a fresh revelation each and every day. I’m going into it with a prayerful heart and an expectant spirit but I will fully confess to you that my soul feels sluggish.

I have been in a place of exhaustion over these last months. My mind has been clouded, my body has ached and insomnia has been my companion since late December. The enemy has been and is still whispering in my ear that my Jesus has forgotten me . . . that He has finally tired of my imperfections and left me behind.

I’m not giving in to it! I am going to fight the good fight of faith and follow the example of my Nehemiah Man. I am going to stand firm in my faith because if I do not, I will not stand at all. I’m praising God for bringing me to a place of emptiness so that I can look to Him to fill my cup.

I’m coming before the Lord and I’m asking Him to do a new thing in me. To rouse my heart to His side and to draw me near in real and tangible ways. To plow through the fog that has settled over me in the form of health issues, physical stress, and emotional upheaval and lay a level path before me. I’m entering the throne room and I’m humbly reminding Him that He has invited me to come in my time of need. O Lord – be near to me. Love me where I am. Take me where I need to be.

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That’s the cry of my heart Sweet Sister and I’m thinking that if I am in this place that perhaps you are too. It might be that different life situations have brought us here but here we are. If that’s the case, I want you to know that you are not alone and that you have a faith sister to walk through it with. We can do this together – you and I. It’s why God gave us to one another. We can join our hearts and we can offer up the next 40 days to the Beautiful One and trust Him to do the beautiful thing in us.

So here’s what I’ll do. I’ll post the daily reading on the blog (except for Sundays) and if you read the Scriptures not only will you have read through the entire New Testament by Easter but God promises that He’ll show you deep and unsearchable things you do not know. He promises that His word is alive and active and will transform your heart. I could use some transformation. What about you?

At the end of the daily passage, I’m going to share my “Lesson from Lent” – nothing long or drawn out just something that God uses to speak straight to my heart from the Scripture that day. I’m putting it at the end because if your time runs short on a particular day – I want you to skip reading my words, not His.

I’m hoping that you’ll start your own running record of what God is showing you. Maybe you’ll even be moved to leave a comment so your Sisters can glean from what you’re learning. No matter how you choose to keep track of all He shares with you . . . treasure it up in your heart Sweet One, meditate on it, mull it over, consider the whisper of the Lover of your soul. The God of the Universe is the only Voice we need to revive our tired souls. So, let’s you and I lean in close, pray for ears to hear and hearts to respond. Let’s dig in to the riches He has given us and prepare to be amazed by what He will reveal to our expectant hearts. O Sister, let’s boldly ask Him for a lesson from Lent and then brace ourselves for a glimpse of Glory!

Day Seven

February 25, 2015 ~~ Mark 6-11

Amplified Bible

Footnotes: I’ve left the footnotes in place if you would like to track down sources in word study and language. Please follow the link to each chapter and scroll to the bottom of the passage.

Mark 6

Jesus went away from there and came to His [own] country and hometown [Nazareth], and His disciples followed [with] Him.

And on the Sabbath He began to teach in the synagogue; and many who listened to Him were utterly astonished, saying, Where did this [a]Man acquire all this? What is the wisdom [the broad and full intelligence which has been] given to Him? What mighty works and exhibitions of power are wrought by His hands! Is not this the Carpenter, the son of Mary and the brother of James and Joses and Judas and Simon? And are not His sisters here among us? And they took offense at Him and [b]were hurt [that is, they [c]disapproved of Him, and it hindered them from acknowledging His authority] and they were caused to stumble and fall. But Jesus said to them, A prophet is not without honor (deference, reverence) except in his [own] country and among [his] relatives and in his [own] house. And He was not able to do [d]even one work of power there, except that He laid His hands on a few sickly people [and] cured them.

And He marveled because of their unbelief (their lack of faith in Him). And He went about among the surrounding villages and continued teaching.

And He called to Him the Twelve [apostles] and began to send them out [as His ambassadors] two by two and gave them authority and power over the unclean spirits. He charged them to take nothing for their journey except a walking stick—no bread, [e]no wallet for a collection bag, no money in their belts (girdles, purses)—But to go with sandals on their feet and not to put on two tunics (undergarments). 10 And He told them, Wherever you go into a house, stay there until you leave that place. 11 And if any community will not receive and accept and welcome you, and they refuse to listen to you, when you depart, shake off the dust that is on your feet, for a testimony against them. [f]Truly I tell you, it will be more tolerable for Sodom and Gomorrah in the judgment day than for that town.

12 So they went out and preached that men should repent [[g]that they should change their minds for the better and heartily amend their ways, with abhorrence of their past sins]. 13 And they drove out many unclean spirits and anointed with oil many who were sick and cured them.

14 King Herod heard of it, for [Jesus’] name had become well known. [h]He and they [of his court] said, John the Baptist has been raised from the dead; that is why these mighty powers [[i]of performing miracles] are at work in Him. 15 [But] others kept saying, It is Elijah! And others said, It is a prophet, like one of the prophets [of old]. 16 But when Herod heard [of it], he said, [[j]This very] John, whom I beheaded, has been raised [from the dead]. 17 For [this] Herod himself had sent and seized John and bound him in prison for the sake of Herodias, his brother Philip’s wife, because he [Herod] had married her. 18 For John had told Herod, It is not lawful and you have no right to have your brother’s wife. 19 And Herodias was angry (enraged) with him and held a grudge against him and wanted to kill him; but she could not, 20 For Herod had [[k]a reverential] fear of John, knowing that he was a righteous and holy man, and [continually] kept him safe [[l]under guard]. When he heard [John speak], he was much perplexed; and [yet] he heard him gladly. 21 But an opportune time came [for Herodias] when Herod on his birthday gave a banquet for his nobles and the high military commanders and chief men of Galilee. 22 For when the daughter [m]of Herodias herself came in and danced, she pleased and [n]fascinated Herod and his guests; and the king said to the girl, Ask me for whatever you desire, and I will give it to you. 23 And he put himself under oath to her, Whatever you ask me, I will give it to you, even to the half of my kingdom. 24 Then she left the room and said to her mother, What shall I ask for [myself]? And she replied, The head of John the Baptist! 25 And she rushed back instantly to the king and requested, saying, I wish you to give me right now the head of John the Baptist on a platter. 26 And the king was deeply pained and grieved and exceedingly sorry, but because of his oaths and his guests, he did not want to slight her [by breaking faith with her]. 27 And immediately the king sent off one [of the soldiers] of his bodyguard and gave him orders to bring [John’s] head. He went and beheaded him in the prison 28 And brought his head on a platter and handed it to the girl, and the girl gave it to her mother. 29 When his disciples learned of it, they came and took [John’s] body and laid it in a tomb.

30 The apostles [sent out as missionaries] came back and gathered together to Jesus, and told Him all that they had done and taught. 31 And He said to them, [[o]As for you] come away by yourselves to a deserted place, and rest a while—for many were [continually] coming and going, and they had not even leisure enough to eat. 32 And they went away in a boat to a solitary place by themselves.

33 Now many [people] saw them going and recognized them, and they ran there on foot from all the surrounding towns, and they got there ahead [of those in the boat]. 34 As Jesus landed, He saw a great crowd waiting, and He was moved with compassion for them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd; and He began to teach them many things. 35 And when [p]the day was already far gone, His disciples came to Him and said, This is a desolate and isolated place, and the hour is now late. 36 Send the crowds away to go into the country and villages round about and buy themselves something to eat. 37 But He replied to them, Give them something to eat yourselves. And they said to Him, Shall we go and buy 200 [q]denarii [about forty dollars] worth of bread and give it to them to eat? 38 And He said to them, How many loaves do you have? Go and see. And when they [had looked and] knew, they said, Five [loaves] and two fish.

39 Then He commanded the people all to recline on the green grass by companies. 40 So they threw themselves down in ranks of hundreds and fifties [with the [r]regularity of an arrangement of beds of herbs, looking [s]like so many garden plots]. 41 And taking the five loaves and two fish, He looked up to heaven and, praising God, gave thanks and broke the loaves and kept on giving them to the disciples to set before the people; and He [also] divided the two fish among [them] all. 42 And they all ate and were satisfied. 43 And they took up twelve [[t]small hand] baskets full of broken pieces [from the loaves] and of the fish. 44 And those who ate the loaves were 5,000 men.

45 And at once He insisted that the disciples get into the boat and go ahead of Him to the other side to Bethsaida, while He was sending the throng away. 46 And after He had taken leave of them, He went off into the hills to pray. 47 Now when evening had come, the boat was out in the middle of the lake, and He was by Himself on the land. 48 And having seen that they were troubled and tormented in [their] rowing, for the wind was against them, about the fourth watch of the night [between 3:00-6:00 a.m.] He came to them, walking [directly] on the sea. And He acted as if He meant to pass by them, 49 But when they saw Him walking on the sea they thought it was a ghost, and [u]raised a [deep, throaty] shriek of terror. 50 For they all saw Him and were agitated (troubled and filled with fear and dread). But immediately He talked with them and said, Take heart! I Am! Stop being alarmed and afraid. 51 And He went up into the boat with them, and the wind ceased ([v]sank to rest as if exhausted by its own beating). And they were astonished exceedingly [beyond measure], 52 For they failed to consider or understand [the teaching and meaning of the miracle of] the loaves; [in fact] their hearts had [w]grown callous [had become dull and had [x]lost the power of understanding].

53 And when they had crossed over, they reached the land of Gennesaret and [y]came to [anchor at] the shore. 54 As soon as they got out of the boat, [the people] recognized Him, 55 And they ran about the whole countryside, and began to carry around sick people on their sleeping pads or mats to any place where they heard that He was.

56 And wherever He came into villages or cities or the country, they would lay the sick in the marketplaces and beg Him that they might touch even the fringe of His outer garment, and as many as touched Him were restored to health.

Mark 7

Now there gathered together to [Jesus] the Pharisees and some of the scribes who had come from Jerusalem, For they had seen that some of His disciples ate with [a]common hands, that is, unwashed [with hands defiled and unhallowed, because they had not given them a [b]ceremonial washing]— For the Pharisees and all of the Jews do not eat unless [merely for ceremonial reasons] they wash their hands [diligently [c]up to the elbow] with clenched fist, adhering [carefully and faithfully] to the tradition of [practices and customs handed down to them by] their forefathers [to be observed]. And [when they come] from the marketplace, they do not eat unless they purify themselves; and there are many other traditions [oral, man-made laws handed down to them, which they observe faithfully and diligently, such as], the washing of cups and wooden pitchers and widemouthed jugs and utensils of copper and [d]beds— And the Pharisees and scribes kept asking [Jesus], Why do Your disciples not order their way of living according to the tradition handed down by the forefathers [to be observed], but eat with hands unwashed and ceremonially not purified?

But He said to them, Excellently and truly [[e]so that there will be no room for blame] did Isaiah prophesy of you, the pretenders and hypocrites, as it stands written: These people [constantly] honor Me with their lips, but their hearts hold off and are far distant from Me. In vain (fruitlessly and without profit) do they worship Me, ordering and teaching [to be obeyed] as doctrines the commandments and precepts of men. You disregard and give up and ask to depart from you the commandment of God and cling to the tradition of men [keeping it carefully and faithfully]. And He said to them, You have a fine way of rejecting [thus thwarting and nullifying and doing away with] the commandment of God in order to keep your tradition (your own human regulations)! 10 For Moses said, Honor (revere with tenderness of feeling and deference) your father and your mother, and, He who curses or reviles or speaks evil of or abuses or treats improperly his father or mother, let him surely die. 11 But [as for you] you say, A man is exempt if he tells [his] father or [his] mother, What you would otherwise have gained from me [everything I have that would have been of use to you] is Corban, that is, is a gift [already given as an offering to God], 12 Then you no longer are permitting him to do anything for [his] father or mother [but are letting him off from helping them]. 13 Thus you are nullifying and making void and of no effect [the authority of] the Word of God through your tradition, which you [in turn] hand on. And many things of this kind you are doing.

14 And He called the people to [Him] again and said to them, Listen to Me, all of you, and understand [what I say]. 15 There is not [even] one thing outside a man which by going into him can pollute and defile him; but the things which come out of a man are what defile him and make him unhallowed and unclean. 16 [f]If any man has ears to hear, let him be listening [and let him [g]perceive and comprehend by hearing]. 17 And when He had left the crowd and had gone into the house, His disciples began asking Him about the parable.

18 And He said to them, Then are you also unintelligent and dull and without understanding? Do you not discern and see that whatever goes into a man from the outside cannot make him unhallowed or unclean, 19 Since it does not reach and enter his heart but [only his] digestive tract, and so passes on [into the place designed to receive waste]? Thus He was making and declaring all foods [ceremonially] clean [that is, [h]abolishing the ceremonial distinctions of the Levitical Law]. 20 And He said, What comes out of a man is what makes a man unclean and renders [him] unhallowed. 21 For from within, [that is] out of the hearts of men, come base and wicked thoughts, sexual immorality, stealing, murder, adultery, 22 Coveting (a greedy desire to have more wealth), dangerous and destructive wickedness, deceit; [i]unrestrained (indecent) conduct; an evil eye (envy), slander (evil speaking, malicious misrepresentation, abusiveness), pride ([j]the sin of an uplifted heart against God and man), foolishness (folly, lack of sense, recklessness, thoughtlessness). 23 All these evil [purposes and desires] come from within, and they make the man unclean and render him unhallowed.

24 And Jesus arose and went away from there to the region of Tyre and Sidon. And He went into a house and did not want anyone to know [that He was there]; but it was not possible for Him to be hidden [from public notice]. 25 Instead, at once, a woman whose little daughter had (was under the control of) an unclean spirit heard about Him and came and flung herself down at His feet. 26 Now the woman was a Greek (Gentile), a Syrophoenician by nationality. And she kept begging Him to drive the demon out of her little daughter. 27 And He said to her, First let the children be fed, for it is not becoming or proper or right to take the children’s bread and throw it to the [little house] dogs. 28 But she answered Him, Yes, Lord, yet even the small pups under the table eat the little children’s scraps of food. 29 And He said to her, Because of this saying, you may go your way; the demon has gone out of your daughter [permanently]. 30 And she went home and found the child thrown on the couch, and the demon departed.

31 Soon after this, Jesus, coming back from the region of Tyre, passed through Sidon on to the Sea of Galilee, through the region of Decapolis [the ten cities]. 32 And they brought to Him a man who was deaf and had difficulty in speaking, and they begged Jesus to place His hand upon him. 33 And taking him aside from the crowd [privately], He thrust His fingers into the man’s ears and spat and touched his tongue; 34 And looking up to heaven, He sighed as He said, Ephphatha, which means, Be opened! 35 And his ears were opened, his tongue was loosed, and he began to speak distinctly and as he should. 36 And Jesus [[k]in His own interest] admonished and ordered them sternly and expressly to tell no one; but the more He commanded them, the more zealously they proclaimed it. 37 And they were overwhelmingly astonished, saying, He has done everything excellently (commendably and nobly)! He even makes the deaf to hear and the dumb to speak!

Mark 8

In those days when [again] an immense crowd had gathered and they had nothing to eat, Jesus called His disciples to Him and told them, I have pity and sympathy for the people and My heart goes out to them, for they have been with Me now three days and have nothing [left] to eat; And if I send them away to their homes hungry, they will be feeble through exhaustion and faint along the road; and some of them have come a long way. And His disciples replied to Him, How can anyone fill and satisfy [these people] with loaves of bread here in [this] desolate and uninhabited region? And He asked them, How many loaves have you? They said, Seven. And He commanded the multitude to recline upon the ground, and He [then] took the seven loaves [of bread] and, having given thanks, He broke them and kept on giving them to His disciples to put before [the people], and they placed them before the crowd.

And they had a few small fish; and when He had [a]praised God and given thanks and asked Him to bless them [to their use], He ordered that these also should be set before [them]. And they ate and were satisfied; and they took up seven [[b]large provision] baskets full of the broken pieces left over. And there were about 4,000 people. And He dismissed them,

10 And at once He got into the boat with His disciples and went to the district of Dalmanutha (or Magdala). 11 The Pharisees came and began to argue with and question Him, demanding from Him a sign (an attesting miracle from heaven) [maliciously] to test Him. 12 And He groaned and sighed deeply in His spirit and said, Why does this generation demand a sign? Positively I say to you, no sign shall be given this generation. 13 And He went away and left them and, getting into the boat again, He departed to the other side.

14 Now they had [[c]completely] forgotten to bring bread, and they had only one loaf with them in the boat. 15 And Jesus [repeatedly and expressly] charged and admonished them, saying, Look out; keep on your guard and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and the leaven of Herod [d]and the Herodians. 16 And they discussed it and reasoned with one another, It is because we have no bread. 17 And being aware [of it], Jesus said to them, Why are you reasoning and saying it is because you have no bread? Do you not yet discern or understand? Are your hearts in [a settled state of] hardness? 18 Having eyes, do you not see [with them], and having ears, do you not hear and perceive and understand the sense of what is said? And do you not remember?

19 When I broke the five loaves for the 5,000, how many [[e]small hand] baskets full of broken pieces did you take up? They said to Him, Twelve. 20 And [when I broke] the seven loaves for the 4,000, how many [[f]large provision] baskets full of broken pieces did you take up? And they said to Him, Seven. 21 And He [g]kept repeating, Do you not yet understand?

22 And they came to Bethsaida. And [people] brought to Him a blind man and begged Him to touch him. 23 And He [h]caught the blind man by the hand and led him out of the village; and when He had spit on his eyes and put His hands upon him, He asked him, Do you [[i]possibly] see anything? 24 And he looked up and said, I see people, but [they look] like trees, walking. 25 Then He put His hands on his eyes again; and the man looked intently [that is, fixed his eyes on definite objects], and he was restored and saw everything distinctly [even what was [j]at a distance]. 26 And He sent him away to his house, telling [him], Do not [even] enter the village [k]or tell anyone there.

27 And Jesus went on with His disciples to the villages of Caesarea Philippi; and on the way He asked His disciples, Who do people say that I am? 28 And they answered [Him], John the Baptist; and others [say], Elijah; but others, one of the prophets. 29 And He asked them, But who do you yourselves say that I am? Peter replied to Him, You are the Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One). 30 And He charged them sharply to tell no one about Him.

31 And He began to teach them that the Son of Man must of necessity suffer many things and be tested and disapproved and rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes, and be put to death, and after three days rise again [[l]from death]. 32 And He said this freely (frankly, plainly, and explicitly, making it unmistakable). And Peter took Him [m]by the hand and led Him aside and then [facing Him] began to rebuke Him. 33 But turning around [His back to Peter] and seeing His disciples, He rebuked Peter, saying, Get behind Me, Satan! For you do not have a mind [n]intent on promoting what God wills, but what pleases men [you are not on God’s side, but that of men].

34 And Jesus called [to Him] the throng with His disciples and said to them, If anyone intends to come after Me, let him deny himself [forget, ignore, disown, and [o]lose sight of himself and his own interests] and take up his cross, and [[p]joining Me as a disciple and siding with My party] follow [q]with Me [continually, cleaving steadfastly to Me]. 35 For whoever wants to save his [[r]higher, spiritual, eternal] life, will lose it [the [s]lower, natural, temporal life [t]which is lived only on earth]; and whoever gives up his life [which is lived only on earth] for My sake and the Gospel’s will save it [his [u]higher, spiritual life [v]in the eternal kingdom of God].

36 For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world, and forfeit his life [[w]in the eternal kingdom of God]?37 For what can a man give as an exchange ([x]a compensation, a ransom, in return) for his [blessed] life [[y]in the eternal kingdom of God]?

38 For whoever [z]is ashamed [here and now] of Me and My words in this adulterous (unfaithful) and [preeminently] sinful generation, of him will the Son of Man also be ashamed when He comes in the glory (splendor and majesty) of His Father with the holy angels.

Mark 9

And Jesus said to them, Truly and solemnly I say to you, there are some standing here who will in no way taste death before they see the kingdom of God come in [its] power.

Six days after this, Jesus took with Him Peter and James and John and led them up on a high mountain apart by themselves. And He was transfigured before them and became resplendent with divine brightness. And His garments became glistening, intensely white, as no fuller (cloth dresser, launderer) on earth could bleach them. And Elijah appeared [there] to them, accompanied by Moses, and they were [a]holding [a protracted] conversation with Jesus.

And [b]Peter took up the conversation, saying, Master, it is good and suitable and beautiful for us to be here. Let us make three booths (tents)—one for You and one for Moses and one for Elijah. For he did not [really] know what to say, for they were in a violent fright ([c]aghast with dread). And a cloud threw a shadow upon them, and a voice came out of the cloud, saying, This is My Son, the [[d]most dearworthy] Beloved One. Be [e]constantly listening to and obeying Him! And looking around, they suddenly no longer saw anyone with them except Jesus only.

And as they were coming back down the mountain, He admonished and [f]expressly ordered them to tell no one what they had seen until the Son of Man should rise from among the dead. 10 So they carefully and faithfully kept the matter to themselves, questioning and disputing with one another about what rising from among the dead meant.

11 And they asked Him, Why do the scribes say that it is necessary for Elijah to come first? 12 And He said to them, Elijah, it is true, does come first to restore all things and [g]set them to rights. And how is it written of the Son of Man that He will suffer many things and be utterly despised and be treated with contempt and rejected? 13 But I tell you that Elijah has already come, and [people] did to him whatever they desired, as it is written of him.

14 And when they came to the [nine] disciples, they saw a great crowd around them and scribes questioning and disputing with them. 15 And immediately all the crowd, when they saw Jesus [[h]returning from the holy mount, His face and person yet glistening], they were greatly amazed and ran up to Him [and] greeted Him. 16 And He asked them, About what are you questioning and discussing with them? 17 And one of the throng replied to Him, Teacher, I brought my son to You, for he has a dumb spirit. 18 And wherever it lays hold of him [so as to make him its own], it dashes him down and convulses him, and he foams [at the mouth] and grinds his teeth, and he [[i]falls into a motionless stupor and] is wasting away. And I asked Your disciples to drive it out, and they were not able [to do it]. 19 And He answered them, O unbelieving generation [without any faith]! How long [j]shall I [have to do] with you? How long am I to bear with you? Bring him to Me. 20 So they brought [the boy] to Him, and when the spirit saw Him, at once it completely convulsed the boy, and he fell to the ground and kept rolling about, foaming [at the mouth]. 21 And [Jesus] asked his father, How long has he had this? And he answered, From the time he was a little boy. 22 And it has often thrown him both into fire and into water, intending to kill him. But if You can do anything, do have pity on us and help us. 23 And Jesus said, [You say to Me], If You can do anything? [Why,] all things can be (are possible) to him who believes! 24 At once the father of the boy gave [an [k]eager, [l]piercing, inarticulate] cry with tears, and he said, Lord, I believe! [Constantly] help my [m]weakness of faith!

25 But when Jesus noticed that a crowd [of people] came running together, He rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it, You dumb and deaf spirit, I charge you to come out of him and never go into him again. 26 And after giving a [hoarse, clamoring, fear-stricken] shriek of anguish and convulsing him terribly, it came out; and the boy lay [pale and motionless] like a corpse, so that many of them said, He is dead. 27 But Jesus took [[n]a strong grip of] his hand and began lifting him up, and he stood.

28 And when He had gone indoors, His disciples asked Him privately, Why could not we drive it out? 29 And He replied to them, This kind cannot be driven out by anything but prayer [o]and fasting.

30 They went on from there and passed along through Galilee. And He did not wish to have anyone know it, 31 For He was [engaged for the time being in] teaching His disciples. He said to them, The Son of Man is being delivered into the hands of men, and they will put Him to death; and when He has been killed, after three days He will rise [[p]from death]. 32 But they did not comprehend what He was saying, and they were afraid to ask Him [what this statement meant].

33 And they arrived at Capernaum; and when [they were] in the house, He asked them, What were you discussing and arguing about on the road? 34 But they kept still, for on the road they had discussed and disputed with one another as to who was the greatest. 35 And He sat down and called the Twelve [apostles], and He said to them, If anyone desires to be first, he must be last of all, and servant of all. 36 And He took a little child and put him in the center of their group; and taking him in [His] arms, He said to them, 37 Whoever in My name and for My sake accepts and receives and welcomes one such child also accepts and receives and welcomes Me; and whoever so receives Me receives not only Me but Him Who sent Me.

38 John said to Him, Teacher, we saw a man who does not follow along with us driving out demons in Your name, and we forbade him to do it, because he [q]is not one of our band [of Your disciples]. 39 But Jesus said, Do not restrain or hinder or forbid him; for no one who does a mighty work in My name will soon afterward be able to speak evil of Me. 40 For he who is not against us is for us.

41 For I tell you truly, whoever gives you a cup of water to drink because you belong to and bear the name of Christ will by no means fail to get his reward. 42 And whoever causes one of these little ones (these believers) who [r]acknowledge and cleave to Me to stumble and sin, it would be better (more profitable and wholesome) for him if a [huge] millstone were hung about his neck, and he were thrown into the sea.

43 And if your hand puts a stumbling block before you and causes you to sin, cut it off! It is more profitable and wholesome for you to go into life [[s]that is really worthwhile] maimed than with two hands to go to hell (Gehenna), into the fire that cannot be put out.[t] 45 And if your foot is a cause of stumbling and sin to you, cut it off! It is more profitable and wholesome for you to enter into life [that is really worthwhile] crippled than, having two feet, to be cast into hell (Gehenna)[u]. 47 And if your eye causes you to stumble and sin, pluck it out! It is more profitable and wholesome for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye than with two eyes to be thrown into hell (Gehenna), 48 Where their worm [[v]which preys on the inhabitants and is a symbol of the wounds inflicted on the man himself by his sins] does not die, and the fire is not put out. 49 For everyone shall be salted with fire.

50 Salt is good (beneficial), but if salt has lost its saltness, how will you restore [the saltness to] it? Have salt within yourselves, and be at peace and live in harmony with one another.

Mark 10

And [Jesus] left there [Capernaum] and went to the region of Judea and beyond [east of] the Jordan; and crowds [constantly] gathered around Him again, and as was His custom, He began to teach them again.

And some Pharisees came up, and, in order to test Him and try to find a weakness in Him, asked, Is it lawful for a man to [a]dismiss and repudiate and divorce his wife? He answered them, What did Moses command you? They replied, Moses allowed a man to write a bill of divorce and to put her away. But Jesus said to them, Because of your hardness of heart [[b]your condition of insensibility to the call of God] he wrote you this [c]precept in your Law.

But from the beginning of creation God made them male and female. For this reason a man shall leave [behind] his father and his mother [d]and be [e]joined to his wife and cleave closely to her permanently, And the two shall become one flesh, so that they are no longer two, but one flesh. What therefore God has united (joined together), let not man separate or divide.

10 And indoors the disciples questioned Him again about this subject. 11 And He said to them, Whoever [f]dismisses (repudiates and divorces) his wife and marries another commits adultery against her; 12 And if a woman dismisses (repudiates and divorces) her husband and marries another, she commits adultery.

13 And they kept bringing young children to Him that He might touch them, and the disciples were reproving them [for it]. 14 But when Jesus saw [it], He was indignant and [g]pained and said to them, Allow the children to come to Me—do not forbid or prevent or hinder them—for to such belongs the kingdom of God. 15 Truly I tell you, whoever does not receive and accept and welcome the kingdom of God like a little child [does] positively shall not enter it at all. 16 And He took them [the children up [h]one by one] in His arms and [[i]fervently invoked a] blessing, placing His hands upon them.

17 And as He was setting out on His journey, a man ran up and knelt before Him and asked Him, Teacher, [You are [j]essentially and perfectly [k]morally] good, what must I do to inherit eternal life [that is, [l]to partake of eternal salvation in the Messiah’s kingdom]? 18 And Jesus said to him, Why do you call Me [[m]essentially and perfectly [n]morally] good? There is no one [[o]essentially and perfectly [p]morally] good—except God alone. 19 You know the commandments: Do not kill, do not commit adultery, do not steal, do not bear false witness, do not defraud, honor your father and mother. 20 And he replied to Him, Teacher, I have carefully guarded and observed all these and taken care not to violate them from my boyhood. 21 And Jesus, looking upon him, loved him, and He said to him, You lack one thing; go and sell all you have and give [the money] to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come [and] accompany Me [[q]walking the same road that I walk]. 22 At that saying the man’s countenance fell and was gloomy, and he went away grieved and sorrowing, for he was holding great possessions. 23 And Jesus looked around and said to His disciples, With what difficulty will those who possess wealth and [r]keep on holding it enter the kingdom of God! 24 And the disciples were amazed and bewildered and perplexed at His words. But Jesus said to them again, Children, how hard it is [s]for those who trust (place their confidence, their sense of safety) in riches to enter the kingdom of God!

25 It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God. 26 And they were shocked and exceedingly astonished, and said to Him and [t]to one another, Then who can be saved? 27 Jesus glanced around at them and said, With men [it is] impossible, but not with God; for all things are possible with God. 28 Peter started to say to Him, Behold, we have [u]yielded up and abandoned everything [once and for all and [v]joined You as Your disciples, siding with Your party] and accompanied You [[w]walking the same road that You walk]. 29 Jesus said, Truly I tell you, there is no one who has given up and left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or lands for My sake and for the Gospel’s 30 Who will not receive a hundred times as much now in this time—houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions—and in the age to come, eternal life. 31 But many [who are now] first will be last [then], and many [who are now] last will be first [then].

32 They were on the way going up to Jerusalem, and Jesus was walking on in front of them; and they were bewildered and perplexed and greatly astonished, and those [who were still] following were seized with alarm and were afraid. And He took the Twelve [apostles] again and began to tell them what was about to happen to Him, 33 [Saying], Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be turned over to the chief priests and the scribes; and they will condemn and sentence Him to death and turn Him over to the Gentiles. 34 And they will mock Him and spit on Him, and whip Him and put Him to death; but after three days He will rise again [[x]from death].

35 And James and John, the sons of Zebedee, approached Him and said to Him, Teacher, we desire You to do for us whatever we ask of You. 36 And He replied to them, What do you desire Me to do for you? 37 And they said to Him, Grant that we may sit, one at Your right hand and one at [Your] left hand, in Your glory (Your majesty and splendor). 38 But Jesus said to them, You do not know what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I drink or be baptized with the baptism [of affliction] with which I am baptized? 39 And they replied to Him, We are able. And Jesus told them, The cup that I drink you will drink, and you will be baptized with the baptism with which I am baptized, 40 But to sit at My right hand or at My left hand is not Mine to give; but [it will be given to those] for whom it is ordained and prepared. 41 And when the other ten [apostles] heard it, they began to be indignant with James and John.

42 But Jesus called them to [Him] and said to them, You know that those who are recognized as governing and are supposed to rule the Gentiles (the nations) lord it over them [ruling with absolute power, holding them in subjection], and their great men exercise authority and dominion over them. 43 But this is not to be so among you; instead, whoever desires to be great among you must be your servant, 44 And whoever wishes to be most important and first in rank among you must be slave of all. 45 For even the Son of Man came not to have service rendered to Him, but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for ([y]instead of) many.

46 Then they came to Jericho. And as He was leaving Jericho with His disciples and a great crowd, Bartimaeus, a blind beggar, a son of Timaeus, was sitting by the roadside. 47 And when he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout, saying, Jesus, Son of David, have pity and mercy on me [[z]now]! 48 And many [aa]severely censured and reproved him, telling him to keep still, but he kept on shouting out all the more, You Son of David, have pity and mercy on me [now]! 49 And Jesus stopped and said, Call him. And they called the blind man, telling him, Take courage! Get up! He is calling you. 50 And throwing off his outer garment, he leaped up and came to Jesus. 51 And Jesus said to him, What do you want Me to do for you? And the blind man said to Him, Master, let me receive my sight. 52 And Jesus said to him, Go your way; your faith has healed you. And at once he received his sight and accompanied Jesus on the road.

Mark 11

When they were getting near to Jerusalem, to Bethphage and Bethany at the Mount of Olives, He sent ahead two of His disciples And instructed them, Go into the village in front of you, and as soon as you enter it, you will find a colt tied, which has never been ridden by anyone; unfasten it and bring it [here]. If anyone asks you, Why are you doing this? answer, The Lord needs it, and He will send it back here presently.

So they went away and found a colt tied at the door out in the [winding] open street, and they loosed it. And some who were standing there said to them, What are you doing, untying the colt? And they replied as Jesus had directed them, and they allowed them to go. And they brought the colt to Jesus and threw their outer garments upon it, and He sat on it. And many [of the people] spread their garments on the road, and others [scattered a layer of] leafy branches which they had cut from the fields. And those who went before and those who followed cried out [ [a]with a cry of happiness], Hosanna! [Be graciously inclined and propitious to Him!] Praised and blessed is He Who comes in the name of the Lord! 10 Praised and blessed in the name of the Lord is the coming kingdom of our father David! Hosanna (O save us) in the highest [heaven]! 11 And Jesus went into Jerusalem and entered the temple [[b]enclosure]; and when He had looked around, surveying and observing everything, as it was already late, He went out to Bethany together with the Twelve [apostles].

12 On the day following, when they had come away from Bethany, He was hungry. 13 And seeing in the distance a fig tree [covered] with leaves, He went to see if He could find any [fruit] on it [[c]for in the fig tree the fruit appears at the same time as the leaves]. But when He came up to it, He found nothing but leaves, for the fig season had not yet come. 14 And He said to it, No one ever again shall eat fruit from you. And His disciples were listening [to what He said].

15 And they came to Jerusalem. And He went into the temple [area, the [d]porches and courts] and began to drive out those who sold and bought in the temple area, and He overturned the [[e]four-footed] tables of the money changers and the seats of those who dealt in doves; 16 And He would not permit anyone to carry any household equipment through the temple enclosure [thus making the temple area a short-cut traffic lane]. 17 And He taught and said to them, Is it not written, My house shall be called a house of prayer for all the nations? But you have turned it into a den of robbers. 18 And the chief priests and the scribes heard [of this] and kept seeking some way to destroy Him, for they feared Him, because the entire multitude was struck with astonishment at His teaching.

19 And when evening came on, He and [f]His disciples, as accustomed, went out of the city.

20 In the morning, when they were passing along, they noticed that the fig tree was withered [completely] away to its roots. 21 And Peter remembered and said to Him, Master, look! The fig tree which You doomed has withered away! 22 And Jesus, replying, said to them, Have faith in God [constantly]. 23 Truly I tell you, whoever says to this mountain, Be lifted up and thrown into the sea! and does not doubt at all in his heart but believes that what he says will take place, it will be done for him. 24 For this reason I am telling you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe (trust and be confident) that it is granted to you, and you will [get it].

25 And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him and [g]let it drop (leave it, let it go), in order that your Father Who is in heaven may also forgive you your [own] failings and shortcomings and let them drop. 26 [h]But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your failings and shortcomings.

27 And they came again to Jerusalem. And when Jesus was walking about in the [[i]courts and porches of the] temple, the chief priests and the scribes and the elders came to Him, 28 And they kept saying to Him, By what [sort of] authority are You doing these things, or who gave You this authority to do them? 29 Jesus told them, I will ask you a question. Answer Me, and then I will tell you by what [sort of] authority I do these things. 30 Was the baptism of John from heaven or from men? Answer Me. 31 And they reasoned and argued with one another, If we say, From heaven, He will say, Why then did you not believe him? 32 But [on the other hand] can we say, From men? For they were afraid of the people, because everybody considered and held John actually to be a prophet. 33 So they replied to Jesus, We do not know. And Jesus said to them, Neither am I going to tell you what [sort of] authority I have for doing these things.

And the Sisters of the Body say, “Amen”

#lessonsfromlent

I would have to say that the #lessonsfromlent for me today has come in the form of one question:

How often do I do that?

See if you can relate . . .

Christ tells Peter what is about to happen and Peter does not like the sound of it. Peter takes Jesus by the hand and begins to tell Him how it should be! Bunny, how often do you do that?

  • How often do you decide that you don’t like the way things are going or unfolding so you take Jesus by the hand and begin to tell Him how it should be?!?

Jesus is right in the middle of revealing a beautiful thing to Peter, James, and John, He is standing before them in dazzling white with Moses and Elijah. The three are conversing and rather than lean in close to try and drink it all in, Peter decides to talk even though he really had nothing to say! Marilyn, how often are you the blurter? How often do you do that?

  • How many are the times when you’re so distracted by you that you miss hearing Him?  How often do you choose to speak rather than lean in close and simply take in the All of Him?

The Messiah shares on the road to Capernaum that He will be delivered into the hands of men and killed. What do the disciples do . . . come alongside to comfort? . . . silently grieve with Him? . . . ask what they might do for Him? No! They focus on themselves and dispute about which of them is the greatest. Marilyn (Bunny) Biddinger, how often do you do that?!?

  • How often are you so concerned about your position, your agenda, your significance that you’re callous to the heartbreak of another? How many times have you engaged in competition within the Body of Christ while a Sweet One among you has the weight of the world on them?

And the final “How often do I do that?” is with the young rich man . . . He came to Christ looking to possess another treasure. To add it to the vast collection of things he already held dear. And think about this—Jesus knew him from the inside out before he ever spoke a word to the Messiah. Christ knew his heart. Christ knew his motivation. And Christ knew that he would choose to walk away. And still, I looked at ten translations, and every one includes some variation of the phrase “Jesus looked on him with love”—He knew the young rich man would reject Him but He loved him anyway.

Christ was well aware that the lure of stuff you can touch and feel in this world, the things that mark us as successful in this time, the things that make us important in the here and now . . . those would be what the young ruler chose. The treasures and possessions of today would win out over possessing eternal treasure. How often Bunny? How often do you do that?

  • How many times do I choose the things of this world over the eternal life to which I have been called?

Sisters, if you are in Christ Jesus . . . your eternity has already begun. Let me type that again—

If you are in Christ Jesus . . . your eternity has already begun.

Fight the good fight of the faith; lay hold of the eternal life to which you were summoned and [for which] you confessed the good confession [of faith] before many witnesses. 1 Timothy 6:12

See you and I, Sister loved by God, we have to begin living with an eternal perspective. If we don’t we will fail to invest our time, our energy and our resources into the things that really matter. Don’t get me wrong. The things of this life are gifts from God and deserve to be stewarded well but our firsfruits – the first of our time, the freshest of our energy, and the cream of our resources are meant for more than the things that fade and wither.

Jesus chose you . . . Jesus chose me for MORE than this fleeting world.

Girlfriend, we were meant to influence eternity. So let’s you and I set our eyes on the One who called us by name, follow in His footsteps with our hearts fixed on the Father, and let’s leave the “how often’s” behind!

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Lessons from Lent: Day Six

24 Feb

creation swap lessons from lent coffee cup Kelly Sikkema 22940

An Explanation of Lessons from Lent

In the next 40 days (35 now because you have already accomplished five), the weeks leading up to Easter, the posts on Glimpsed Glory will be different. I am reading through the New Testament during this time and I am hoping the Holy Spirit will lead me to a fresh revelation each and every day. I’m going into it with a prayerful heart and an expectant spirit but I will fully confess to you that my soul feels sluggish.

I have been in a place of exhaustion over these last months. My mind has been clouded, my body has ached and insomnia has been my companion since late December. The enemy has been and is still whispering in my ear that my Jesus has forgotten me . . . that He has finally tired of my imperfections and left me behind.

I’m not giving in to it! I am going to fight the good fight of faith and follow the example of my Nehemiah Man. I am going to stand firm in my faith because if I do not, I will not stand at all. I’m praising God for bringing me to a place of emptiness so that I can look to Him to fill my cup.

I’m coming before the Lord and I’m asking Him to do a new thing in me. To rouse my heart to His side and to draw me near in real and tangible ways. To plow through the fog that has settled over me in the form of health issues, physical stress, and emotional upheaval and lay a level path before me. I’m entering the throne room and I’m humbly reminding Him that He has invited me to come in my time of need. O Lord – be near to me. Love me where I am. Take me where I need to be.

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That’s the cry of my heart Sweet Sister and I’m thinking that if I am in this place that perhaps you are too. It might be that different life situations have brought us here but here we are. If that’s the case, I want you to know that you are not alone and that you have a faith sister to walk through it with. We can do this together – you and I. It’s why God gave us to one another. We can join our hearts and we can offer up the next 40 days to the Beautiful One and trust Him to do the beautiful thing in us.

So here’s what I’ll do. I’ll post the daily reading on the blog (except for Sundays) and if you read the Scriptures not only will you have read through the entire New Testament by Easter but God promises that He’ll show you deep and unsearchable things you do not know. He promises that His word is alive and active and will transform your heart. I could use some transformation. What about you?

At the end of the daily passage, I’m going to share my “Lesson from Lent” – nothing long or drawn out just something that God uses to speak straight to my heart from the Scripture that day. I’m putting it at the end because if your time runs short on a particular day – I want you to skip reading my words, not His.

I’m hoping that you’ll start your own running record of what God is showing you. Maybe you’ll even be moved to leave a comment so your Sisters can glean from what you’re learning. No matter how you choose to keep track of all He shares with you . . . treasure it up in your heart Sweet One, meditate on it, mull it over, consider the whisper of the Lover of your soul. The God of the Universe is the only Voice we need to revive our tired souls. So, let’s you and I lean in close, pray for ears to hear and hearts to respond. Let’s dig in to the riches He has given us and prepare to be amazed by what He will reveal to our expectant hearts. O Sister, let’s boldly ask Him for a lesson from Lent and then brace ourselves for a glimpse of Glory!

Day Six

February 24, 2015 ~~ Mark 1-5

Amplified Bible

Footnotes: I’ve left the footnotes in place if you would like to track down sources in word study and language. Please follow the link to each chapter and scroll to the bottom of the passage.

Mark 1

The beginning [of the facts] of the good news (the Gospel) of Jesus Christ, [a]the Son of God. 2 [b]Just as it is written in the prophet Isaiah: Behold, I send My messenger before Your face, who will make ready Your way— A voice of one crying in the wilderness [shouting in the desert], Prepare the way of the Lord, make His [c]beaten tracks straight (level and passable)!

John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness (desert), preaching a baptism [[d]obligating] repentance ([e]a change of one’s mind for the better, heartily amending one’s ways, with abhorrence of his past sins) in order [f]to obtain forgiveness of and release from sins. And there kept going out to him [continuously] all the country of Judea and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem; and they were baptized by him in the river Jordan, [g]as they were confessing their sins.

And John wore clothing woven of camel’s hair and had a leather girdle around his loins and ate locusts and wild honey. And he preached, saying, After me comes He Who is stronger (more powerful and more valiant) than I, the strap of Whose sandals I am not worthy or fit to stoop down and unloose. I have baptized you with water, but He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.

In those days Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. 10 And when He came up out of the water, at once he [John] saw the heavens torn open and the [Holy] Spirit like a dove coming down [[h]to enter] [i]into Him. 11 And there came a voice [j]out from within heaven, You are My Beloved Son; in You I am well pleased.

12 Immediately the [Holy] Spirit [from within] drove Him out into the wilderness (desert), 13 And He stayed in the wilderness (desert) forty days, being tempted [all the while] by Satan; and He was with the wild beasts, and the angels ministered to Him [continually].

14 Now after John was arrested and put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the good news (the Gospel) of the kingdom of God, 15 And saying, The [appointed period of] time is fulfilled (completed), and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent ([k]have a change of mind which issues in regret for past sins and in change of conduct for the better) and believe (trust in, rely on, and adhere to) the good news (the Gospel).

16 And passing along the shore of the Sea of Galilee, He saw Simon [Peter] and Andrew the brother of Simon casting a net [to and fro] in the sea, for they were fishermen. 17 And Jesus said to them, Come after Me and [l]be My disciples, and I will make you to become fishers of men. 18 And at once they left their nets and [[m]yielding up all claim to them] followed [with] Him [[n]joining Him as disciples and siding with His party].

19 He went on a little farther and saw James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, who were in [their] boat putting their nets in order. 20 And immediately He called out to them, and [[o]abandoning all mutual claims] they left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired men and went off after Him [[p]to be His disciples, side with His party, and follow Him].

21 And they entered into Capernaum, and immediately on the Sabbath He went into the synagogue and began to teach. 22 And they were completely astonished at His teaching, for He was teaching as One Who possessed authority, and not as the scribes.

23 Just at that time there was in their synagogue a man [who was in the power] of an unclean spirit; and now [immediately] he raised a deep and terrible cry from the depths of his throat, saying, 24 What have You to do with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have You come to destroy us? I know who You are—the Holy One of God! 25 And Jesus rebuked him, saying, Hush up (be muzzled, gagged), and come out of him! 26 And the unclean spirit, throwing the man into convulsions and [q]screeching with a loud voice, came out of him. 27 And they were all so amazed and [r]almost terrified that they kept questioning and demanding one of another, saying, What is this? What new (fresh) teaching! With authority He gives orders even to the unclean spirits and they obey Him! 28 And immediately rumors concerning Him spread [everywhere] throughout all the region surrounding Galilee.

29 And at once He left the synagogue and went into the house of Simon [Peter] and Andrew, accompanied by James and John. 30 Now Simon’s mother-in-law [s]had for some time been lying sick with a fever, and at once they told Him about her. 31 And He went up to her and took her by the hand and raised her up; and the fever left her, and she began to wait on them.

32 Now when it was evening, after the sun had set, they brought to Him all who were sick and those under the power of demons, 33 Until the whole town was gathered together about the door. 34 And He cured many who were afflicted with various diseases; and He drove out many demons, but would not allow the demons to talk because they knew Him [[t]intuitively].

35 And in the morning, long before daylight, He got up and went out to a [u]deserted place, and there He prayed. 36 And Simon [Peter] and those who were with him followed Him [[v]pursuing Him eagerly and hunting Him out], 37 And they found Him and said to Him, Everybody is looking for You. 38 And He said to them, Let us be going on into the neighboring country towns, that I may preach there also; for that is why I came out. 39 [So] He went throughout the whole of Galilee, preaching in their synagogues and driving out demons.

40 And a leper came to Him, begging Him on his knees and saying to Him, If You are willing, You are able to make me clean. 41 And being moved with pity and sympathy, Jesus reached out His hand and touched him, and said to him, I am willing; be made clean! 42 And at once the leprosy [completely] left him and he was made clean [by being healed]. 43 And Jesus charged him sternly (sharply and threateningly, and with earnest admonition) and [acting with deep feeling thrust him forth and] sent him away at once, 44 And said to him, See that you tell nothing [of this] to anyone; but begone, show yourself to the priest, and offer for your purification what Moses commanded, as a proof (an evidence and witness) to the people [that you are really healed].45 But he went out and began to talk so freely about it and blaze abroad the news [spreading it everywhere] that [Jesus] could no longer openly go into a town but was outside in [lonely] desert places. But the people kept on coming to Him from [w]all sides and every quarter.

Mark 2

And Jesus having returned to Capernaum, after some days it was rumored about that He was in the house [probably Peter’s]. And so many people gathered together there that there was no longer room [for them], not even around the door; and He was discussing the Word.

Then they came, bringing a paralytic to Him, who had been picked up and was being carried by four men. And when they could not get him to a place in front of Jesus because of the throng, they dug through the roof above Him; and when they had [a]scooped out an opening, they let down the [[b]thickly padded] quilt or mat upon which the paralyzed man lay. And when Jesus saw their faith [their confidence in God through Him], He said to the paralyzed man, Son, your sins are forgiven [you] and put away [that is, the [c]penalty is remitted, the sense of guilt removed, and you are made upright and in right standing with God].

Now some of the scribes were sitting there, holding a dialogue with themselves as they questioned in their hearts, Why does this [d]Man talk like this? He is blaspheming! Who can forgive sins [[e]remove guilt, remit the penalty, and bestow righteousness instead] except God alone? And at once Jesus, becoming fully aware in His spirit that they thus debated within themselves, said to them, Why do you argue (debate, reason) about all this in your hearts? Which is easier: to say to the paralyzed man, Your sins are forgiven and [f]put away, or to say, Rise, take up your sleeping pad or mat, and start walking about [and [g]keep on walking]? 10 But that you may know positively and beyond a doubt that the Son of Man has right and authority and power on earth to forgive sins—He said to the paralyzed man, 11 I say to you, arise, pick up and carry your sleeping pad or mat, and be going on home. 12 And he arose at once and picked up the sleeping pad or mat and went out before them all, so that they were all amazed and [h] recognized and praised and thanked God, saying, We have never seen anything like this before!

13 [Jesus] went out again along the seashore; and all the multitude kept gathering about Him, and He kept teaching them. 14 And as He was passing by, He saw Levi (Matthew) son of Alphaeus sitting at the tax office, and He said to him, Follow Me! [Be [i]joined to Me as a disciple, side with My party!] And he arose and joined Him as His disciple and sided with His party and accompanied Him. 15 And as Jesus, together with His disciples, sat at table in his [Levi’s] house, many tax collectors and persons [[j]definitely stained] with sin were dining with Him, for there were many who walked the same road (followed) with Him. 16 And the scribes [belonging to the party] of the Pharisees, when they saw that He was eating with [those [k]definitely known to be especially wicked] sinners and tax collectors, said to His disciples, Why does He eat and drink with tax collectors and [notorious] sinners? 17 And when Jesus heard it, He said to them, Those who are strong and well have no need of a physician, but those who are weak and sick; I came not to call the righteous ones to repentance, but sinners (the [l]erring ones and [m]all those not free from sin).

18 Now John’s disciples and the Pharisees were observing a fast; and [some people] came and asked Jesus, Why are John’s disciples and the disciples of the Pharisees fasting, but Your disciples are not doing so? 19 Jesus answered them, Can the wedding guests fast (abstain from food and drink) while the bridegroom is with them? As long as they have the bridegroom with them, they cannot fast. 20 But the days will come when the bridegroom will be taken away from them, and they will fast in that day. 21 No one sews a patch of unshrunken (new) goods on an old garment; if he does, the patch tears away from it, the new from the old, and the rent (tear) becomes bigger and worse [than it was before]. 22 And no one puts new wine into old wineskins; if he does, the wine will burst the skins, and the wine is lost and the bottles destroyed; but new wine is to be put in new (fresh) wineskins.

23 One Sabbath He was going along beside the fields of standing grain, and as they made their way, His disciples began to [n]pick off the grains. 24 And the Pharisees said to Him, Look! Why are they doing what is not permitted or lawful on the Sabbath? 25 And He said to them, Have you never [even] read what David did when he was in need and was hungry, he and those who were accompanying him?—26 How he went into the house of God when Abiathar was the high priest, and ate the sacred loaves set forth [before God], which it is not permitted or lawful for any but the priests to eat, and [how he] also gave [them] to those who were with him?

27 And Jesus said to them, The Sabbath was made on account and for the sake of man, not man for the Sabbath; 28 So the Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath.

Mark 3

Again Jesus went into a synagogue, and a man was there who had one withered hand [[a]as the result of accident or disease]. And [the Pharisees] kept watching Jesus [closely] to see whether He would cure him on the Sabbath, so that they might get a charge to bring against Him [[b]formally]. And He said to the man who had the withered hand, Get up [and stand here] in the midst. And He said to them, Is it lawful and right on the Sabbath to do good or to do evil, to save life or to take it? But they kept silence. And He glanced around at them with vexation and anger, grieved at the hardening of their hearts, and said to the man, Hold out your hand. He held it out, and his hand was [completely] restored. Then the Pharisees went out and immediately held a consultation with the Herodians against Him, how they might [devise some means to] put Him to death.

And Jesus retired with His disciples to the lake, and a great throng from Galilee followed Him. Also from Judea And from Jerusalem and Idumea and from beyond the Jordan and from about Tyre and Sidon—a vast multitude, hearing all the many things that He was doing, came to Him. And He told His disciples to have a little boat in [constant] readiness for Him because of the crowd, lest they press hard upon Him and crush Him. 10 For He had healed so many that all who had distressing bodily diseases kept falling upon Him and pressing upon Him in order that they might touch Him.

11 And the spirits, the unclean ones, [c]as often as they might see Him, fell down before Him and kept screaming out, You are the Son of God! 12 And He charged them strictly and severely under penalty again and again that they should not make Him known.

13 And He went up on the hillside and called to Him [[d]for Himself] those whom He wanted and chose, and they came to Him. 14 And He appointed twelve to [e]continue to be with Him, and that He might send them out to preach [as apostles or special messengers] 15 And to have authority and power to heal the sick and to drive out demons: 16 [They were] Simon, and He surnamed [him] Peter; 17 James son of Zebedee and John the brother of James, and He surnamed them Boanerges, that is, Sons of Thunder; 18 And Andrew, and Philip, and Bartholomew (Nathaniel), and Matthew, and Thomas, and James son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus (Judas, not Iscariot), and Simon the Cananaean [also called Zelotes], 19 And Judas Iscariot, he who betrayed Him.

20 Then He went to a house [probably Peter’s], but a throng came together again, so that Jesus and His disciples could not even take food. 21 And when those [f]who belonged to Him ([g]His kinsmen) heard it, they went out to take Him by force, for they kept saying, He is out of [h]His mind (beside Himself, deranged)! 22 And the scribes who came down from Jerusalem said, He is possessed by Beelzebub, and, By [the help of] the prince of demons He is casting out demons.

23 And He summoned them to Him and said to them in parables (illustrations or comparisons put beside truths to explain them), How can Satan drive out Satan? 24 And if a kingdom is divided and rebelling against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. 25 And if a house is divided (split into factions and rebelling) against itself, that house will not be able to last. 26 And if Satan has raised an insurrection against himself and is divided, he cannot stand but is [surely] coming to an end.

27 But no one can go into a strong man’s house and ransack his household goods right and left and seize them as plunder unless he first binds the strong man; then indeed he may [thoroughly] plunder his house. 28 Truly and solemnly I say to you, all sins will be forgiven the sons of men, and whatever abusive and blasphemous things they utter; 29 But whoever speaks abusively against or maliciously misrepresents the Holy Spirit can never get forgiveness, but is guilty of and is in the grasp of [i]an everlasting trespass. 30 For they [j]persisted in saying, [k]He has an unclean spirit.

31 Then His mother and His brothers came and, standing outside, they sent word to Him, calling [for] Him. 32 And a crowd was sitting around Him, and they said to Him, Your mother and Your brothers and Your sisters are outside asking for You. 33 And He replied, Who are My mother and My brothers? 34 And looking around on those who sat in a circle about Him, He said, See! Here are My mother and My brothers; 35 For whoever does the things God wills is My brother and sister and mother!

Mark 4

Again Jesus began to teach beside the lake. And a very great crowd gathered about Him, so that He got into a ship in order to sit in it on the sea, and the whole crowd was at the lakeside on the shore. And He taught them many things in parables (illustrations or comparisons put beside truths to explain them), and in His teaching He said to them:

Give attention to this! Behold, a sower went out to sow. And as he was sowing, some seed fell along the path, and the birds came and ate it up. Other seed [of the same kind] fell on ground full of rocks, where it had not much soil; and at once it sprang up, because it had no depth of soil; And when the sun came up, it was scorched, and because it had not taken root, it withered away. Other seed [of the same kind] fell among thorn plants, and the thistles grew and pressed together and utterly choked and suffocated it, and it yielded no grain. And other seed [of the same kind] fell into good (well-adapted) soil and brought forth grain, growing up and increasing, and yielded up to thirty times as much, and sixty times as much, and even a hundred times as much as had been sown. And He said, He who has ears to hear, let him be hearing [and let him [a]consider, and comprehend]. 10 And as soon as He was alone, those who were around Him, with the Twelve [apostles], began to ask Him about the parables.

11 And He said to them, To you has been entrusted the mystery of the kingdom of God [that is, [b]the secret counsels of God which are hidden from the ungodly]; but for those outside [[c]of our circle] everything becomes a parable, 12 In order that they may [indeed] look and look but not see and perceive, and may hear and hear but not grasp and comprehend, [d]lest haply they should turn again, and it [[e]their willful rejection of the truth] should be forgiven them.

13 And He said to them, Do you not discern and understand this parable? How then is it possible for you to discern and understand all the parables?

14 The sower sows the Word. 15 The ones along the path are those who have the Word sown [in their hearts], but when they hear, Satan comes at once and [by force] takes away the message which is sown in them. 16 And in the same way the ones sown upon stony ground are those who, when they hear the Word, at once receive and accept and welcome it with joy; 17 And they have no real root in themselves, and so they endure for a little while; then when trouble or persecution arises on account of the Word, they immediately are offended (become displeased, indignant, resentful) and they stumble and fall away. 18 And the ones sown among the thorns are others who hear the Word; 19 Then the cares and anxieties of the world and distractions of the age, and the pleasure and delight and false glamour and deceitfulness of riches, and the craving and passionate desire for other things creep in and choke and suffocate the Word, and it becomes fruitless. 20 And those sown on the good (well-adapted) soil are the ones who hear the Word and receive and accept and welcome it and bear fruit—some thirty times as much as was sown, some sixty times as much, and some [even] a hundred times as much.

21 And He said to them, Is the lamp brought in to be put under a [f]peck measure or under a bed, and not [to be put] on the lampstand? 22 [[g]Things are hidden temporarily only as a means to revelation.] For there is nothing hidden except to be revealed, nor is anything [temporarily] kept secret except in order that it may be made known.

23 If any man has ears to hear, let him be listening and let him perceive and comprehend.

24 And He said to them, Be careful what you are hearing. The measure [h][of thought and study] you give [to [i]the truth you hear] will be the measure [j][of virtue and knowledge] that comes back to you—and more [besides] will be given to you who hear. 25 For to him who has will more be given; and from him who has nothing, even what he has will be taken away [[k]by force],

26 And He said, The kingdom of God is like a man who scatters seed upon the ground, 27 And then continues sleeping and rising night and day while the seed sprouts and grows and [l]increases—he knows not how. 28 The earth produces [acting] by itself—first the blade, then the ear, then the full grain in the ear. 29 But when the grain is ripe and permits, immediately he [m]sends forth [the reapers] and puts in the sickle, because the harvest stands ready.

30 And He said, With what can we compare the kingdom of God, or what parable shall we use to illustrate and explain it?

31 It is like a grain of mustard seed, which, when sown upon the ground, is the smallest of all seeds upon the earth; 32 Yet after it is sown, it grows up and becomes the greatest of all garden herbs and puts out large branches, so that the birds of the air are able to make nests and dwell in its shade.

33 With many such parables [Jesus] spoke the Word to them, as they were able to hear and [n]to comprehend and understand. 34 He did not tell them anything without a parable; but privately to His disciples ([o]those who were peculiarly His own) He explained everything [fully].

35 On that same day [when] evening had come, He said to them, Let us go over to the other side [of the lake]. 36 And leaving the throng, they took Him with them, [just] as He was, in the boat [in which He was sitting]. And other boats were with Him. 37 And a furious storm of wind [[p]of hurricane proportions] arose, and the waves kept beating into the boat, so that it was already becoming filled. 38 But He [Himself] was in the stern [of the boat], asleep on the [leather] cushion; and they awoke Him and said to Him, Master, do You not care that we are perishing? 39 And He arose and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, Hush now! Be still (muzzled)! And the wind ceased ([q]sank to rest as if exhausted by its beating) and there was [immediately] a great calm ([r]a perfect peacefulness). 40 He said to them, Why are you so timid and fearful? How is it that you have no faith (no [s]firmly relying trust)?

41 And they were filled with great awe and [t]feared exceedingly and said one to another, Who then is this, that even wind and sea obey Him?

Mark 5

They came to the other side of the sea to the region of the Gerasenes.

And as soon as He got out of the boat, there met Him out of the tombs a man [under the power] of an unclean spirit. This man [a]continually lived among the tombs, and no one could subdue him any more, even with a chain; For he had been bound often with shackles for the feet and [b]handcuffs, but the handcuffs of [light] chains he wrenched apart, and the shackles he rubbed and ground together and broke in pieces; and no one had strength enough to restrain or tame him.

Night and day among the tombs and on the mountains he was always [c]shrieking and screaming and [d]beating and bruising and [e]cutting himself with stones. And when from a distance he saw Jesus, he ran and fell on his knees before Him in homage, And crying out with a loud voice, he said, What have You to do with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? [What is there in common between us?] I [f]solemnly implore you by God, do not begin to torment me!

For Jesus was commanding, Come out of the man, you unclean spirit! And He asked him, What is your name? He replied, My name is Legion, for we are many. 10 And he kept begging Him urgently not to send them [himself and the other demons] away out of that region. 11 Now a great herd of hogs was grazing there on the hillside. 12 And the demons begged Him, saying, Send us to the hogs, that we may go into them! 13 So He gave them permission. And the unclean spirits came out [of the man] and entered into the hogs; and the herd, numbering about 2,000, rushed headlong down the steep slope into the sea and were drowned in the sea. 14 The hog feeders ran away, and told [it] in the town and in the country. And [the people] came to see what it was that had taken place.

15 And they came to Jesus and looked intently and searchingly at the man who had been a demoniac, sitting there, clothed and in his right mind, [the same man] who had had the legion [of demons]; and they were [g]seized with alarm and struck with fear. 16 And those who had seen it related in full what had happened to the man possessed by demons and to the hogs. 17 And they began to beg [Jesus] to leave their neighborhood.18 And when He had stepped into the boat, the man who had been controlled by the unclean spirits kept begging Him that he might be with Him.19 But Jesus refused to permit him, but said to him, Go home to your own [family and relatives and friends] and bring back word to them of how much the Lord has done for you, and [how He has] had sympathy for you and mercy on you.

20 And he departed and began to publicly proclaim in Decapolis [the region of the ten cities] how much Jesus had done for him, and all the people were astonished and marveled.

21 And when Jesus had recrossed in the boat to the other side, a great throng gathered about Him, and He was at the lakeshore. 22 Then one of the rulers of the synagogue came up, Jairus by name; and seeing Him, he prostrated himself at His feet23 And begged Him earnestly, saying, My little daughter is at the point of death. Come and lay Your hands on her, so that she may be healed and live.24 And Jesus went with him; and a great crowd kept following Him and pressed Him [h]from all sides [so as almost to suffocate Him].

25 And there was a woman who had had a flow of blood for twelve years,26 And who had endured much [i]suffering under [the hands of] many physicians and had spent all that she had, and was no better but instead grew worse.

27 She had heard the reports concerning Jesus, and she came up behind Him in the throng and touched His garment, 28 For she kept saying, If I only touch His garments, I shall be restored to health. 29 And immediately her flow of blood was dried up at the source, and [[j]suddenly] she felt in her body that she was healed of her [[k]distressing] ailment. 30 And Jesus, recognizing in Himself that the power proceeding from Him had gone forth, turned around immediately in the crowd and said, Who touched My clothes?

31 And the disciples kept saying to Him, You see the crowd pressing hard around You [l]from all sides, and You ask, Who touched Me? 32 Still He kept looking around to see her who had done it. 33 But the woman, knowing what had been done for her, though alarmed and frightened and trembling, fell down before Him and told Him the whole truth. 34 And He said to her, Daughter, your faith (your [m]trust and confidence in Me, springing from faith in God) has restored you to health. Go in [n](into) peace and be continually healed and freed from your [[o]distressing bodily] disease.

35 While He was still speaking, there came some from the ruler’s house, who said [to Jairus], Your daughter has died. Why bother and distress the Teacher any further? 36 [p]Overhearing but ignoring what they said, Jesus said to the ruler of the synagogue, Do not be seized with alarm and struck with fear; only keep on believing. 37 And He permitted no one to accompany Him except Peter and James and John the brother of James. 38 When they arrived at the house of the ruler of the synagogue, He [q]looked [carefully and with understanding] at [the] tumult and the people weeping and wailing loudly. 39 And when He had gone in, He said to them, Why do you make an uproar and weep? The little girl is not dead but is sleeping. 40 And they laughed and [r]jeered at Him. But He put them all out, and, taking the child’s father and mother and those who were with Him, He went in where the little girl was lying. 41 Gripping her [firmly] by the hand, He said to her, Talitha cumi—which translated is, Little girl, I say to you, arise [[s]from the sleep of death]! 42 And instantly the girl got up and started walking around—for she was twelve years old. And they were utterly astonished and overcome with amazement. 43 And He strictly commanded and warned them that no one should know this, and He [[t]expressly] told them to give her [something] to eat.

And the Women of God unite to sound the “Amen”

#lessonsfromlent

The truth of these passages today is nearly overwhelming and to choose just one to focus on is almost asking too much! I’d love to draw attention to Mark 5:34 and point out that the work of Christ Jesus cannot be undone and the healing is more than a simple alleviation of the symptoms of the illness . . . we are FREED from the captivity of the disease.

I’d also like to dig into the why of the placement of this account.  Why did Jesus call forth the woman–nameless in the crowd–to reveal herself when He’s been telling so many others to keep their restoration quiet, right in the middle of the temple leader, Jarius, asking Christ to heal his daughter and the announcement she had died. Might this woman, unnamed, unimportant, one of the masses have been the one to encourage him to believe no matter his position or the despair of his circumstance?

And if we had time we could look at the reaction of the disciples when Jesus calmed the storm in Mark 4:41 and we could ask ourselves when is the last time I reacted to the activity of Jesus in my life with awe? When is the last time He quieted a storm for me and I was left asking “Who is this Man?” and why does He love me so?

Or we could giggle together over the family of Jesus coming after Him because from their perspective “He is out of His mind” and we could draw the comparison to our own lives because we know that living full out for Jesus can look strange even to those close to us. And is it any wonder that it might look strange from the outside because we see in Mark 1:24-26 that sin will not go down without some yelling and screaming and the ruckus of a restored life makes tongues wag!

Yes, if we had time we could look at all of that and enjoy the fresh revelations God has poured out on us. But since space does not permit it, she wrote with a small smile, we’ll limit ourselves to the life on the “other side.”

They came to the other side of the sea to the region of the Gerasenes. And as soon as He got out of the boat, there met Him out of the tombs a man [under the power] of an unclean spirit. This man [a]continually lived among the tombs, and no one could subdue him any more, even with a chain; For he had been bound often with shackles for the feet and [b]handcuffs, but the handcuffs of [light] chains he wrenched apart, and the shackles he rubbed and ground together and broke in pieces; and no one had strength enough to restrain or tame him. Night and day among the tombs and on the mountains he was always [c]shrieking and screaming and [d]beating and bruising and [e]cutting himself with stones. And when from a distance he saw Jesus, he ran and fell on his knees before Him in homage, And crying out with a loud voice, he said, What have You to do with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? [What is there in common between us?] I [f]solemnly implore you by God, do not begin to torment me! For Jesus was commanding, Come out of the man, you unclean spirit! And He asked him, What is your name? He replied, My name is Legion, for we are many. 10 And he kept begging Him urgently not to send them [himself and the other demons] away out of that region. 11 Now a great herd of hogs was grazing there on the hillside. 12 And the demons begged Him, saying, Send us to the hogs, that we may go into them! 13 So He gave them permission. And the unclean spirits came out [of the man] and entered into the hogs; and the herd, numbering about 2,000, rushed headlong down the steep slope into the sea and were drowned in the sea. 14 The hog feeders ran away, and told [it] in the town and in the country. And [the people] came to see what it was that had taken place. 15 And they came to Jesus and looked intently and searchingly at the man who had been a demoniac, sitting there, clothed and in his right mind, [the same man] who had had the legion [of demons]; and they were [g]seized with alarm and struck with fear. 16 And those who had seen it related in full what had happened to the man possessed by demons and to the hogs. 17 And they began to beg [Jesus] to leave their neighborhood. 18 And when He had stepped into the boat, the man who had been controlled by the unclean spirits kept begging Him that he might be with Him. 19 But Jesus refused to permit him, but said to him, Go home to your own [family and relatives and friends] and bring back word to them of how much the Lord has done for you, and [how He has] had sympathy for you and mercy on you. 20 And he departed and began to publicly proclaim in Decapolis [the region of the ten cities] how much Jesus had done for him, and all the people were astonished and marveled.

Really gaze into the face of the man on “the other side” and see the way Satan has driven him to isolation. How the enemy separated him from any love or comfort he may have received and caused him to dwell in the tombs where there were no signs of life and death reigned.

  • They came to the other side of the sea to the region of the Gerasenes. And as soon as He got out of the boat, there met Him out of the tombs a man [under the power] of an unclean spirit. This man [a]continually lived among the tombs, and no one could subdue him any more, even with a chain;

Now ask yourself if you were not driven to isolation and dwelling in the tombs of death before Christ arrived? And might it be that when we’re hurt or offended we’re tempted to return to some variation of that isolation? Might it be that rather than seek comfort we return to the tombs?

  • The enemy is all about pushing us into isolation and separating us from any comfort we might receive. Don’t let him do it Girlfriend!

And don’t you find it ironic that the bondage the man was experiencing on the inside took the form of shackled feet and cuffed hands on the outside? And that no matter how they tried, no one could help, no one was strong enough to tame him?

For he had been bound often with shackles for the feet and [b]handcuffs, but the handcuffs of [light] chains he wrenched apart, and the shackles he rubbed and ground together and broke in pieces; and no one had strength enough to restrain or tame him.

Does it not strike you that we wear our bondage the same way? Rather we want to or not, those shackles make themselves known to everyone around us and those cuffs, no matter how we try to hide them are visible for all the world to see. And no matter how many may try, they simply aren’t strong enough to help us

  • The enemy would love nothing more than to convince you that this time the shackles on your feet and the cuffs on your hand are beyond anyone . . . no one can tame it. Don’t you listen to him Sister!

It surely seemed that the man on the other side was hopeless, left to be tormented by the shrieking and the screaming night and day. Beaten and bruised and suffering self-inflicted wounds—and then . . . Jesus.

Night and day among the tombs and on the mountains he was always [c]shrieking and screaming and [d]beating and bruising and [e]cutting himself with stones. And when from a distance he saw Jesus, he ran and fell on his knees before Him . .

Oh Sweet One, is not the same for you and I? Have we not resided on the other side and heard the condemnation of our own hearts shriek and scream of our inadequacies and our imperfections? And then . . . Jesus.

Have we not encountered strongholds we believed would keep us from ever being freed from the shackles and cuffs that held us? Have we not wondered who is strong enough to tame it? And then . . .Jesus.

Have not each one of us found ourselves beaten and bruised on the other side? Have we not suffered the pain of self-inflicted wounds and thought there is no hope? And then . . . Jesus.

We see Him in the distance, fall to our knees and are rescued. Death is defeated by the One who is Life. Isolation is replaced by the embrace of Grace. Bondage is broken by the Freedom Giver and by His stripes our wounds are healed–even the self-inflicted ones.  Praise His Name Beloved that He traveled to the other side for us and we can utter those three beautiful words—And then . . .Jesus.

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Lessons from Lent: Day Five

23 Feb

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An Explanation of Lessons from Lent

In the next 40 days (36 now because you have already accomplished four), the weeks leading up to Easter, the posts on Glimpsed Glory will be different. I am reading through the New Testament during this time and I am hoping the Holy Spirit will lead me to a fresh revelation each and every day. I’m going into it with a prayerful heart and an expectant spirit but I will fully confess to you that my soul feels sluggish.

I have been in a place of exhaustion over these last months. My mind has been clouded, my body has ached and insomnia has been my companion since late December. The enemy has been and is still whispering in my ear that my Jesus has forgotten me . . . that He has finally tired of my imperfections and left me behind.

I’m not giving in to it! I am going to fight the good fight of faith and follow the example of my Nehemiah Man. I am going to stand firm in my faith because if I do not, I will not stand at all. I’m praising God for bringing me to a place of emptiness so that I can look to Him to fill my cup.

I’m coming before the Lord and I’m asking Him to do a new thing in me. To rouse my heart to His side and to draw me near in real and tangible ways. To plow through the fog that has settled over me in the form of health issues, physical stress, and emotional upheaval and lay a level path before me. I’m entering the throne room and I’m humbly reminding Him that He has invited me to come in my time of need. O Lord – be near to me. Love me where I am. Take me where I need to be.

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That’s the cry of my heart Sweet Sister and I’m thinking that if I am in this place that perhaps you are too. It might be that different life situations have brought us here but here we are. If that’s the case, I want you to know that you are not alone and that you have a faith sister to walk through it with. We can do this together – you and I. It’s why God gave us to one another. We can join our hearts and we can offer up the next 40 days to the Beautiful One and trust Him to do the beautiful thing in us.

So here’s what I’ll do. I’ll post the daily reading on the blog (except for Sundays) and if you read the Scriptures not only will you have read through the entire New Testament by Easter but God promises that He’ll show you deep and unsearchable things you do not know. He promises that His word is alive and active and will transform your heart. I could use some transformation. What about you?

At the end of the daily passage, I’m going to share my “Lesson from Lent” – nothing long or drawn out just something that God uses to speak straight to my heart from the Scripture that day. I’m putting it at the end because if your time runs short on a particular day – I want you to skip reading my words, not His.

I’m hoping that you’ll start your own running record of what God is showing you. Maybe you’ll even be moved to leave a comment so your Sisters can glean from what you’re learning. No matter how you choose to keep track of all He shares with you . . . treasure it up in your heart Sweet One, meditate on it, mull it over, consider the whisper of the Lover of your soul. The God of the Universe is the only Voice we need to revive our tired souls. So, let’s you and I lean in close, pray for ears to hear and hearts to respond. Let’s dig in to the riches He has given us and prepare to be amazed by what He will reveal to our expectant hearts. O Sister, let’s boldly ask Him for a lesson from Lent and then brace ourselves for a glimpse of Glory!

Day Five

February 23, 2015 ~~ Matthew 25-28

Amplified Bible

Footnotes: I’ve left the footnotes in place if you would like to track down sources in word study and language. Please follow the link to each chapter and scroll to the bottom of the passage.

Matthew 25

Then the kingdom of heaven shall be likened to ten virgins who took their lamps and went to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish (thoughtless, without forethought) and five were wise (sensible, intelligent, and prudent). For when the foolish took their lamps, they did not take any [extra] oil with them; But the wise took flasks of oil along with them [also] with their lamps.

While the bridegroom lingered and was slow in coming, they all began nodding their heads, and they fell asleep. But at midnight there was a shout, Behold, the bridegroom! Go out to meet him! Then all those virgins got up and put their own lamps in order. And the foolish said to the wise, Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out. But the wise replied, There will not be enough for us and for you; go instead to the dealers and buy for yourselves. 10 But while they were going away to buy, the bridegroom came, and those who were prepared went in with him to the marriage feast; and the door was shut.

11 Later the other virgins also came and said, Lord, Lord, open [the door] to us! 12 But He replied, I solemnly declare to you, I do not know you [I am not acquainted with you]. 13 Watch therefore [give strict attention and be cautious and active], for you know neither the day nor the hour when the Son of Man will come.

14 For it is like a man who was about to take a long journey, and he called his servants together and entrusted them with his property. 15 To one he gave five talents [probably about $5,000], to another two, to another one—to each in proportion to his own [a]personal ability. Then he departed and left the country. 16 He who had received the five talents went at once and traded with them, and he gained five talents more. 17 And likewise he who had received the two talents—he also gained two talents more. 18 But he who had received the one talent went and dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money.

19 Now after a long time the master of those servants returned and settled accounts with them. 20 And he who had received the five talents came and brought him five more, saying, Master, you entrusted to me five talents; see, here I have gained five talents more. 21 His master said to him, Well done, you upright (honorable, [b]admirable) and faithful servant! You have been faithful and trustworthy over a little; I will put you in charge of much. Enter into and share the joy (the delight, the [c]blessedness) which your master enjoys.

22 And he also who had the two talents came forward, saying, Master, you entrusted two talents to me; here I have gained two talents more. 23 His master said to him, Well done, you upright (honorable, [d]admirable) and faithful servant! You have been faithful and trustworthy over a little; I will put you in charge of much. Enter into and share the joy (the delight, the [e]blessedness) which your master enjoys.

24 He who had received one talent also came forward, saying, Master, I knew you to be a harsh and hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you had not winnowed [the grain]. 25 So I was afraid, and I went and hid your talent in the ground. Here you have what is your own. 26 But his master answered him, You wicked and lazy and idle servant! Did you indeed know that I reap where I have not sowed and gather [grain] where I have not winnowed? 27 Then you should have invested my money with the bankers, and at my coming I would have received what was my own with interest. 28 So take the talent away from him and give it to the one who has the ten talents.

29 For to everyone who has will more be given, and he will be [f]furnished richly so that he will have an abundance; but from the one who does not have, even what he does have will be taken away. 30 And throw the good-for-nothing servant into the outer darkness; there will be weeping and grinding of teeth.

31 When the Son of Man comes in His glory (His majesty and splendor), and all the holy angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory. 32 All nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them [the people] from one another as a shepherd separates his sheep from the goats; 33 And He will cause the sheep to stand at His right hand, but the goats at His left.

34 Then the King will say to those at His right hand, Come, you blessed of My Father [you [g]favored of God and appointed to eternal salvation], inherit (receive as your own) the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. 35 For I was hungry and you gave Me food, I was thirsty and you gave Me something to drink, I was a stranger and you [h]brought Me together with yourselves and welcomed and entertained and [i]lodged Me, 36 I was naked and you clothed Me, I was sick and you visited Me [j]with help and ministering care, I was in prison and you came to see Me.

37 Then the just and upright will answer Him, Lord, when did we see You hungry and gave You food, or thirsty and gave You something to drink? 38 And when did we see You a stranger and welcomed and entertained You, or naked and clothed You? 39 And when did we see You sick or in prison and came to visit You? 40 And the King will reply to them, Truly I tell you, in so far as you did it for one of the least [[k]in the estimation of men] of these My brethren, you did it for Me.

41 Then He will say to those at His left hand, Begone from Me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels! 42 For I was hungry and you gave Me no food, I was thirsty and you gave Me nothing to drink, 43 I was a stranger and you did not welcome Me and entertain Me, I was naked and you did not clothe Me, I was sick and in prison and you did not visit Me [l]with help and ministering care. 44 Then they also [in their turn] will answer, Lord, when did we see You hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to You? 45 And He will reply to them, Solemnly I declare to you, in so far as you failed to do it for the least [[m]in the estimation of men] of these, you failed to do it for Me.

46 Then they will go away into eternal punishment, but those who are just and upright and in right standing with God into eternal life.

Matthew 26

When Jesus had ended this discourse, He said to His disciples, You know that the Passover is in two days—and the Son of Man will be delivered up [a]treacherously to be crucified.

Then the chief priests and the elders of the people gathered in the [[b]open] court of the palace of the high priest, whose name was Caiaphas, And consulted together in order to arrest Jesus by stratagem secretly and put Him to death. But they said, It must not be during the Feast, for fear that there will be a riot among the people.

Now when Jesus came back to Bethany and was in the house of Simon the leper, A woman came up to Him with an alabaster flask of very precious perfume, and she poured it on His head as He reclined at table. And when the disciples saw it, they were indignant, saying, For what purpose is all this waste? For this perfume might have been sold for a large sum and the money given to the poor. 10 But Jesus, fully aware of this, said to them, Why do you bother the woman? She has done a noble (praiseworthy and beautiful) thing to Me. 11 For you always have the poor among you, but you will not always have Me. 12 In pouring this perfume on My body she has done something to prepare Me for My burial. 13 Truly I tell you, wherever this good news (the Gospel) is preached in the whole world, what this woman has done will be told also, in memory of her.

14 Then one of the Twelve [apostles], who was called Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests 15 And said, What are you willing to give me if I hand Him over to you? And they weighed out for and paid to him thirty pieces of silver [about twenty-one dollars and sixty cents]. 16 And from that moment he sought a fitting opportunity to betray Him.

17 Now on the first day of Unleavened Bread [Passover week], the disciples came to Jesus and said to Him, Where do You wish us to prepare for You to eat the Passover supper? 18 He said, Go into the city to a certain man and say to him, The Master says: My time is near; I will keep the Passover at your house with My disciples. 19 And accordingly the disciples did as Jesus had directed them, and they made ready the Passover supper.

20 When it was evening, He was reclining at table with the twelve disciples. 21 And as they were eating, He said, Solemnly I say to you, one of you will betray Me! 22 They were exceedingly pained and distressed and deeply hurt and sorrowful and began to say to Him one after another, [c]Surely it cannot be I, Lord, can it? 23 He replied, He who has [just] dipped his hand in the same dish with Me will betray Me! 24 The Son of Man is going just as it is written of Him; but woe to that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed! It would have been better (more profitable and wholesome) for that man if he had never been born! 25 Judas, the betrayer, said, [d]Surely it is not I, is it, Master? He said to him, You have stated [the fact].

26 Now as they were eating, Jesus took bread and, [e]praising God, gave thanks and asked Him to bless it to their use, and when He had broken it, He gave it to the disciples and said, Take, eat; this is My body. 27 And He took a cup, and when He had given thanks, He gave it to them, saying, Drink of it, all of you; 28 For this is My blood of the new covenant, which [[f]ratifies the agreement and] is [g]being poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. 29 I say to you, I shall not drink again of this fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it with you new and [h]of superior quality in My Father’s kingdom.

30 And when they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives. 31 Then Jesus said to them, You will all be offended and stumble and fall away because of Me this night [distrusting and deserting Me], for it is written, I will strike the Shepherd, and the sheep of the flock will be scattered. 32 But after I am raised up [to life again], I will go ahead of you to Galilee.

33 Peter declared to Him, Though they all are offended and stumble and fall away because of You [and distrust and desert You], I will never do so. 34 Jesus said to him, Solemnly I declare to you, this very night, before a [i]single rooster crows, you will deny and disown Me three times. 35 Peter said to Him, Even if I must die with You, I will not deny or disown You! And all the disciples said the same thing.

36 Then Jesus went with them to a place called Gethsemane, and He told His disciples, Sit down here while I go over yonder and pray. 37 And taking with Him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, He began to [j]show grief and distress of mind and was [k]deeply depressed. 38 Then He said to them, My soul is very sad and deeply grieved, so that [l]I am almost dying of sorrow. Stay here and keep awake and keep watch with Me.

39 And going a little farther, He threw Himself upon the ground on His face and prayed saying, My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass away from Me; nevertheless, not what I will [not what I desire], but as You will and desire.

40 And He came to the disciples and found them sleeping, and He said to Peter, What! Are you so utterly unable to stay awake and keep watch with Me for one hour? 41 All of you must keep awake (give strict attention, be cautious and active) and watch and pray, that you may not come into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.

42 Again a second time He went away and prayed, My Father, if this cannot pass by unless I drink it, Your will be done. 43 And again He came and found them sleeping, for their eyes were weighed down with sleep. 44 So, leaving them again, He went away and prayed for the third time, using the same words.

45 Then He returned to the disciples and said to them, Are you still sleeping and taking your rest? Behold, the hour is at hand, and the Son of Man is betrayed into the hands of [m]especially wicked sinners [[n]whose way or nature it is to act in opposition to God]. 46 Get up, let us be going! See, My betrayer is at hand!

47 As He was still speaking, Judas, one of the Twelve [apostles], came up, and with him a great crowd with swords and clubs, from the chief priests and elders of the people. 48 Now the betrayer had given them a sign, saying, The One I shall kiss is the Man; seize Him. 49 And he came up to Jesus at once and said, Hail (greetings, good health to You, long life to You), Master! And he [o]embraced Him and kissed Him [p]with [pretended] warmth and devotion. 50 Jesus said to him, Friend, for what are you here? Then they came up and laid hands on Jesus and arrested Him.

51 And behold, one of those who were with Jesus reached out his hand and drew his sword and, striking the body servant of the high priest, cut off his ear. 52 Then Jesus said to him, Put your sword back into its place, for all who draw the sword will die by the sword.

53 Do you suppose that I cannot appeal to My Father, and He will immediately provide Me with more than twelve legions [[q]more than 80,000] of angels? 54 But how then would the Scriptures be fulfilled, that it must come about this way? 55 At that moment Jesus said to the crowds, Have you come out with swords and clubs as [you would] against a robber to capture Me? Day after day I was [r]accustomed to sit in the [s]porches and courts of the temple teaching, and you did not arrest Me. 56 But all this has taken place in order that the Scriptures of the prophets might be fulfilled. Then all the disciples deserted Him and, fleeing, escaped. 57 But those who had seized Jesus took Him away to Caiaphas, the high priest, where the scribes and the elders had assembled.

58 But Peter followed Him at a distance, as far as the courtyard of the high priest’s home; he even went inside and sat with the guards to see the end.

59 Now the chief priests and the whole council (the Sanhedrin) sought to get false witnesses to testify against Jesus, so that they might put Him to death; 60 But they found none, though many witnesses came forward [to testify]. At last two men came forward 61 And testified, This [t]Fellow said, I am able to tear down the [u]sanctuary of the temple of God and to build it up again in three days. 62 And the high priest stood up and said, Have You no answer to make? What about this that these men testify against You? 63 But Jesus kept silent. And the high priest said to Him, [v]I call upon you to swear by the living God, and tell us whether you are the Christ, the Son of God.

64 Jesus said to him, [w]You have stated [the fact]. More than that, I tell you: You will in the future see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of [x]the Almighty and coming on the clouds of the sky.

65 Then the high priest tore his clothes and exclaimed, He has uttered blasphemy! What need have we of further evidence? You have now heard His blasphemy. 66 What do you think now? They answered, He deserves to be put to death. 67 Then they spat in His face and struck Him with their fists; and some [y]slapped Him in the face, 68 Saying, Prophesy to us, You Christ (the Messiah)! Who was it that struck You?

69 Now Peter was sitting outside in the courtyard, and [z]one maid came up to him and said, You were also with Jesus the Galilean! 70 But he denied it [aa]falsely before them all, saying, I do not know what you mean.

71 And when he had gone out to the porch, another maid saw him, and she said to the bystanders, This fellow was with Jesus the Nazarene! 72 And again he denied it and [ab]disowned Him with an oath, saying, I do not know the Man!

73 After a little while, the bystanders came up and said to Peter, You certainly are one of them too, for even your accent betrays you. 74 Then Peter began to invoke a curse on himself and to swear, I do not even know the Man! And at that moment a rooster crowed.

75 And Peter remembered Jesus’ words, when He had said, Before a [ac]single rooster crows, you will deny and disown Me three times. And he went outside and wept bitterly.

Matthew 27

When it was morning, all the chief priests and the elders of the people held a consultation against Jesus to put Him to death; And they bound Him and led Him away and handed Him over to Pilate the governor.

When Judas, His betrayer, saw that [Jesus] was condemned, [Judas was [a]afflicted in mind and troubled for his former folly; and] with remorse [with little more than a selfish dread of the consequences] he brought back the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and the elders, Saying, I have sinned in betraying innocent blood. They replied, What is that to us? See to that yourself. And casting the pieces of silver [forward] into the [Holy Place of the [b]sanctuary of the] temple, he departed; and he went off and hanged himself.

But the chief priests, picking up the pieces of silver, said, It is not legal to put these in the [consecrated] treasury, for it is the price of blood. So after consultation they bought with them [the pieces of silver] the potter’s field [as a place] in which to bury strangers. Therefore that piece of ground has been called the Field of Blood to the present day. Then were fulfilled the words spoken by Jeremiah the prophet when he said, And they took the thirty pieces of silver, the price of Him on Whom a price had been set by some of the sons of Israel, 10 And they gave them for the potter’s field, as the Lord directed me.

11 Now Jesus stood before the governor [Pilate], and the governor asked Him, Are you the King of the Jews? Jesus said to him, You have stated [the fact]. 12 But when the charges were made against Him by the chief priests and elders, He made no answer.

13 Then Pilate said to Him, Do You not hear how many and how serious are the things they are testifying against You? 14 But He made no reply to him, not even to a single accusation, so that the governor marveled greatly.

15 Now at the Feast [of the Passover] the governor was in the habit of setting free for the people any one prisoner whom they chose. 16 And at that time they had a notorious prisoner whose name was Barabbas. 17 So when they had assembled for this purpose, Pilate said to them, Whom do you want me to set free for you, Barabbas, or Jesus Who is called Christ? 18 For he knew that it was because of envy that they had handed Him over to him.

19 Also, while he was seated on the judgment bench, his wife sent him a message, saying, Have nothing to do with that just and upright Man, for I have had a painful experience today in a dream because of Him.

20 But the chief priests and the elders prevailed on the people to ask for Barabbas, and put Jesus to death. 21 Again the governor said to them, Which of the two do you wish me to release for you? And they said, Barabbas! 22 Pilate said to them, Then what shall I do with Jesus Who is called Christ? 23 They all replied, Let Him be crucified! And he said, Why? What has He done that is evil? But they shouted all the louder, Let Him be crucified!

24 So when Pilate saw that he was getting nowhere, but rather that a riot was about to break out, he took water and washed his hands in the presence of the crowd, saying, I am not guilty of nor responsible for this [c]righteous Man’s blood; see to it yourselves. 25 And all the people answered, Let His blood be on us and on our children! 26 So he set free for them Barabbas; and he [had] Jesus whipped, and delivered Him up to be crucified.

27 Then the governor’s soldiers took Jesus into the palace, and they gathered the whole battalion about Him. 28 And they stripped off His clothes and put a scarlet robe ([d]garment of dignity and office worn by Roman officers of rank) upon Him, 29 And, weaving a crown of thorns, they put it on His head and put a reed (staff) in His right hand. And kneeling before Him, they made sport of Him, saying, Hail (greetings, good health to You, long life to You), King of the Jews! 30 And they spat on Him, and took the reed (staff) and struck Him on the head. 31 And when they finished making sport of Him, they stripped Him of the robe and put His own garments on Him and led Him away to be crucified.

32 As they were marching forth, they came upon a man of Cyrene named Simon; this man they forced to carry the cross of Jesus. 33 And when they came to a place called Golgotha [Latin: Calvary], which means The Place of a Skull, 34 They offered Him wine mingled with gall to drink; but when He tasted it, He refused to drink it.

35 And when they had crucified Him, they divided and distributed His garments [among them] by casting lots [e]so that the prophet’s saying was fulfilled, They parted My garments among them and over My apparel they cast lots. 36 Then they sat down there and kept watch over Him.

37 And over His head they put the accusation against Him ([f]the cause of His death), which read, This is Jesus, the King of the Jews.

38 At the same time two robbers were crucified with Him, one on the right hand and one on the left. 39 And those who passed by spoke reproachfully and abusively and jeered at Him, wagging their heads, 40 And they said, You Who would tear down the [g]sanctuary of the temple and rebuild it in three days, rescue Yourself [h]from death. If You are the Son of God, come down from the cross.

41 In the same way the chief priests, with the scribes and elders, made sport of Him, saying, 42 He rescued others [i]from death; Himself He cannot rescue [j]from death. He is the King of Israel? Let Him come down from the cross now, and we will believe in and [k]acknowledge and cleave to Him. 43 He trusts in God; let God deliver Him now if He cares for Him and will have Him, for He said, I am the Son of God.

44 And the robbers who were crucified with Him also abused and reproached and made sport of Him in the same way.

45 Now from the sixth hour (noon) there was darkness over all the land until the ninth hour (three o’clock). 46 And about the ninth hour (three o’clock) Jesus cried with a loud voice, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?—that is, My God, My God, why have You abandoned Me [leaving Me [l]helpless, forsaking and failing Me in My need]?

47 And some of the bystanders, when they heard it, said, This Man is calling for Elijah! 48 And one of them immediately ran and took a sponge, soaked it with vinegar (a sour wine), and put it on a reed (staff), and was [m]about to give it to Him to drink. 49 But the others said, Wait! Let us see whether Elijah will come to save Him [n]from death.

50 And Jesus cried again with a loud voice and gave up His spirit.

51 And at once the curtain of the [o]sanctuary of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom; the earth shook and the rocks were split. 52 The tombs were opened and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep [p]in death were raised [to life]; 53 And coming out of the tombs after His resurrection, they went into the holy city and appeared to many people.

54 When the centurion and those who were with him keeping watch over Jesus observed the earthquake and all that was happening, they were terribly frightened and filled with awe, and said, Truly this was God’s Son!

55 There were also numerous women there, looking on from a distance, who were of those who had accompanied Jesus from Galilee, ministering to Him. 56 Among them were Mary of Magdala, and Mary the mother of James and Joseph, and the mother of Zebedee’s sons.

57 When it was evening, there came a rich man from Arimathea, named Joseph, who also was a disciple of Jesus. 58 He went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus, and Pilate ordered that it be given to him. 59 And Joseph took the body and [q]rolled it up in a clean linen cloth [r]used for swathing dead bodies 60 And laid it in his own fresh ([s]undefiled) tomb, which he had hewn in the rock; and he rolled a big boulder over the door of the tomb and went away.

61 And Mary of Magdala and the other Mary kept sitting there opposite the tomb.

62 The next day, that is, the day after the day of Preparation [for the Sabbath], the chief priests and the Pharisees assembled before Pilate 63 And said, Sir, we have just remembered how that [t]vagabond Imposter said while He was still alive, After three days I will rise again. 64 Therefore give an order to have the tomb made secure and safeguarded until the third day, for fear that His disciples will come and steal Him away and tell the people that He has risen from the dead, and the last deception and fraud will be worse than the first. 65 Pilate said to them, You have a guard [of soldiers; take them and] go, make it as secure as you can. 66 So they went off and made the tomb secure by sealing the boulder, a guard of soldiers being with them and remaining to watch.

Matthew 28

Now after the Sabbath, near dawn of the first day of the week, Mary of Magdala and the other Mary went to take a look at the tomb. And behold, there was a great earthquake, for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven and came and rolled the boulder back and sat upon it.

His appearance was like lightning, and his garments as white as snow. And those keeping guard were so frightened at the sight of him that they were agitated and they trembled and became like dead men. But the angel said to the women, Do not be alarmed and frightened, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, Who was crucified.

He is not here; He has risen, as He said [He would do]. Come, see the place where He lay.

Then go quickly and tell His disciples, He has risen from the dead, and behold, He is going before you to Galilee; there you will see Him. Behold, I have told you. So they left the tomb hastily with fear and great joy and ran to tell the disciples. And as they went, behold, Jesus met them and said, Hail (greetings)! And they went up to Him and clasped His feet and worshiped Him. 10 Then Jesus said to them, Do not be alarmed and afraid; go and tell My brethren to go into Galilee, and there they will see Me.

11 While they were on their way, behold, some of the guards went into the city and reported to the chief priests everything that had occurred. 12 And when they [the chief priests] had gathered with the elders and had consulted together, they gave a sufficient sum of money to the soldiers, 13 And said, Tell people, His disciples came at night and stole Him away while we were sleeping. 14 And if the governor hears of it, we will appease him and make you safe and free from trouble and care. 15 So they took the money and did as they were instructed; and this story has been current among the Jews to the present day.

16 Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed and made appointment with them. 17 And when they saw Him, they fell down and worshiped Him; but some doubted.

18 Jesus approached and, [a]breaking the silence, said to them, All authority (all power of rule) in heaven and on earth has been given to Me. 19 Go then and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them [b]into the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 Teaching them to observe everything that I have commanded you, and behold, I am with you [c]all the days ([d]perpetually, uniformly, and on every occasion), to the [very] close and consummation of the age. [e]Amen (so let it be).

And the Sisters of the faith lift up the “Amen”

#Lessonsfromlent

As I read these familiar Scriptures afresh this morning with the prayer for spirit awakening in my soul I was struck by the questions of the “just and upright” that Jesus is commending for their generosity, for their care, and for their love for the “least of these” . . . Read back over the Scriptures from Matthew 25.

34 Then the King will say to those at His right hand, Come, you blessed of My Father [you [g]favored of God and appointed to eternal salvation], inherit (receive as your own) the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. 35 For I was hungry and you gave Me food, I was thirsty and you gave Me something to drink, I was a stranger and you [h]brought Me together with yourselves and welcomed and entertained and [i]lodged Me, 36 I was naked and you clothed Me, I was sick and you visited Me [j]with help and ministering care, I was in prison and you came to see Me.

37 Then the just and upright will answer Him, Lord, when did we see You hungry and gave You food, or thirsty and gave You something to drink? 38 And when did we see You a stranger and welcomed and entertained You, or naked and clothed You? 39 And when did we see You sick or in prison and came to visit You? 40 And the King will reply to them, Truly I tell you, in so far as you did it for one of the least [[k]in the estimation of men] of these My brethren, you did it for Me.  Matthew 25:34-40

Christ begins with the inheritance the faithful servants will receive and He moves on to outline the why of their very great reward. The Scripture tells us that God has prepared more for us in Glory than we can conceive, think, or imagine and I think looking forward to and anticipating what that reward might be is a wondrous thing.

But look at the response of the group Jesus is addressing . . .

“Lord, when did we see You? When did we welcome You? When did clothe You?  When did we visit you?”

O Sister, do you see it?  They were so immersed in the nature of Jesus that it became the natural outflow of their hearts to serve and even more so to Love . . .with no strings attached.  So much had Jesus become the fixation of their hearts that they gave of time, spirit, and resources to those around them without commending themselves.

I learned from a Sweet Sister last night the definition of the word “gave” in John 3:16 . . . it means to “give without expectation of compensation.” Here’s John 3:16. Read through it with the definition in mind . . .

For God so loved the world that He GAVE (without expectation of compensation) His One and Only Son that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16

Set aside the fact that we could never repay the debt and focus in on the fact that repayment was never expected. Does that not absolutely blow your mind with a gale force of the Spirit? God gave, Christ accomplished, not based on what He would receive but the pure joy of expressing love. . . with no strings.

And that’s what we see in the Matthew passage. They had no expectation of compensation . . .Girlfriend, they were looking, they were imitating, they were following in the steps of their Jesus!!! I want that! I want to love so deeply and to have the Messiah so engrained in me that I love the same way He did . . . with spectacular extravagance and caution thrown to the wind. I want it to run through every fiber of my being until that’s not what I do but that’s who I am. Oh Sweet One, is that not the cry of your heart as well?

Lord, bless me with the ability to love others with no strings attached! Let me feed the hungry, those who need physical food and those who need to hear about the Bread of Heaven. Show me the thirsty so I can bless with a long cool drink of the Living Water. Point out the strangers in need, those feeling exposed, unclothed and vulnerable in a harsh world. Give me the desire to point them toward the warmth and refuge of being clothed from head-to-toe in Jesus Christ while I wrap a coat around them. And Father, lead me to the imprisoned. Those who need to know that freedom has been purchased for them and has nothing to do with physical surroundings. Send me the insecure. The ones in bondage to insignificance and those who are chained by feeling unwelcome and unaccepted. Stir my heart Lord to love like you with NO STRINGS ATTACHED!  In the Name of He Who Blazed the Trail — Amen

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Love. . . No strings attached. #lessonsfromlent

Lessons From Lent: Day Four

21 Feb

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An Explanation of Lessons from Lent

In the next 40 days (37 now because you have already accomplished three), the weeks leading up to Easter, the posts on Glimpsed Glory will be different. I am reading through the New Testament during this time and I am hoping the Holy Spirit will lead me to a fresh revelation each and every day. I’m going into it with a prayerful heart and an expectant spirit but I will fully confess to you that my soul feels sluggish.

I have been in a place of exhaustion over these last months. My mind has been clouded, my body has ached and insomnia has been my companion since late December. The enemy has been and is still whispering in my ear that my Jesus has forgotten me . . . that He has finally tired of my imperfections and left me behind.

I’m not giving in to it! I am going to fight the good fight of faith and follow the example of my Nehemiah Man. I am going to stand firm in my faith because if I do not, I will not stand at all. I’m praising God for bringing me to a place of emptiness so that I can look to Him to fill my cup.

I’m coming before the Lord and I’m asking Him to do a new thing in me. To rouse my heart to His side and to draw me near in real and tangible ways. To plow through the fog that has settled over me in the form of health issues, physical stress, and emotional upheaval and lay a level path before me. I’m entering the throne room and I’m humbly reminding Him that He has invited me to come in my time of need. O Lord – be near to me. Love me where I am. Take me where I need to be.

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That’s the cry of my heart Sweet Sister and I’m thinking that if I am in this place that perhaps you are too. It might be that different life situations have brought us here but here we are. If that’s the case, I want you to know that you are not alone and that you have a faith sister to walk through it with. We can do this together – you and I. It’s why God gave us to one another. We can join our hearts and we can offer up the next 40 days to the Beautiful One and trust Him to do the beautiful thing in us.

So here’s what I’ll do. I’ll post the daily reading on the blog (except for Sundays) and if you read the Scriptures not only will you have read through the entire New Testament by Easter but God promises that He’ll show you deep and unsearchable things you do not know. He promises that His word is alive and active and will transform your heart. I could use some transformation. What about you?

At the end of the daily passage, I’m going to share my “Lesson from Lent” – nothing long or drawn out just something that God uses to speak straight to my heart from the Scripture that day. I’m putting it at the end because if your time runs short on a particular day – I want you to skip reading my words, not His.

I’m hoping that you’ll start your own running record of what God is showing you. Maybe you’ll even be moved to leave a comment so your Sisters can glean from what you’re learning. No matter how you choose to keep track of all He shares with you . . . treasure it up in your heart Sweet One, meditate on it, mull it over, consider the whisper of the Lover of your soul. The God of the Universe is the only Voice we need to revive our tired souls. So, let’s you and I lean in close, pray for ears to hear and hearts to respond. Let’s dig in to the riches He has given us and prepare to be amazed by what He will reveal to our expectant hearts. O Sister, let’s boldly ask Him for a lesson from Lent and then brace ourselves for a glimpse of Glory!

Day Four

February 21, 2015 ~~ Matthew 19-24

Amplified Bible

Footnotes: I’ve left the footnotes in place if you would like to track down sources in word study and language. Please follow the link to each chapter and scroll to the bottom of the passage.

Matthew 19

Now when Jesus had finished saying these things, He left Galilee and went into the part of Judea that is beyond the Jordan; And great throngs accompanied Him, and He cured them there.

And Pharisees came to Him and put Him to the test by asking, Is it lawful and right to dismiss and repudiate and divorce one’s wife for any and [a]every cause? He replied, Have you never read that He Who made them from the beginning made them male and female, And said, For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and shall be united firmly (joined inseparably) to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let not man put asunder (separate).

They said to Him, Why then did Moses command [us] to give a certificate of divorce and thus to dismiss and repudiate a wife? He said to them, Because of the hardness (stubbornness and perversity) of your hearts Moses permitted you to dismiss and repudiate and divorce your wives; but from the beginning it has not been [b]so [ordained]. I say to you: whoever dismisses (repudiates, divorces) his wife, except for unchastity, and marries another commits adultery, [c]and he who marries a divorced woman commits adultery.

10 The disciples said to Him, If the case of a man with his wife is like this, it is neither profitable nor advisable to marry. 11 But He said to them, Not all men can accept this saying, but it is for those to whom [the capacity to receive] it has been given. 12 For there are eunuchs who have been born incapable of marriage; and there are eunuchs who have been made so by men; and there are eunuchs who have made themselves incapable of marriage for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. Let him who is able to accept this accept it.

13 Then little children were brought to Jesus, that He might put His hands on them and pray; but the disciples rebuked those who brought them. 14 But He said, Leave the children alone! Allow the little ones to come to Me, and do not forbid or restrain or hinder them, for of such [as these] is the kingdom of heaven composed. 15 And He put His hands upon them, and then went on His way.

16 And behold, there came a man up to Him, saying, Teacher, what excellent and perfectly and essentially good deed must I do to possess eternal life? 17 And He said to him, Why do you ask Me about the perfectly and essentially good? There is only One Who is good [perfectly and essentially]—God. If you would enter into the Life, you must continually keep the commandments. 18 He said to Him, What [d]sort of commandments? [Or, which ones?] And Jesus answered, You shall not kill, You shall not commit adultery, You shall not steal, You shall not bear false witness, 19 Honor your father and your mother, and, You shall love your neighbor as [you do] yourself. 20 The young man said, I have observed all these from my youth; what still do I lack? 21 Jesus answered him, If you would be perfect [that is, [e]have that spiritual maturity which accompanies self-sacrificing character], go and sell what you have and give to the poor, and you will have riches in heaven; and come, [f]be My disciple [side with My party and follow Me]. 22 But when the young man heard this, he went away sad (grieved and in much distress), for he had great possessions.

23 And Jesus said to His disciples, Truly I say to you, it will be difficult for a rich man to get into the kingdom of heaven. 24 Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to go into the kingdom of heaven. 25 When the disciples heard this, they were utterly puzzled (astonished, bewildered), saying, Who then can be saved [[g]from eternal death]? 26 But Jesus looked at them and said, With men this is impossible, but all things are possible with God.

27 Then Peter answered Him, saying, Behold, we have left [our] all and have become [h]Your disciples [sided with Your party and followed You]. What then shall we receive? 28 Jesus said to them, Truly I say to you, in the new age [the [i]Messianic rebirth of the world], when the Son of Man shall sit down on the throne of His glory, you who have [become My disciples, sided with My party and] followed Me will also sit on twelve thrones and judge the twelve tribes of Israel. 29 And anyone and everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands for My name’s sake will receive [j]many [even a hundred] times more and will inherit eternal life. 30 But many who [now] are first will be last [then], and many who [now] are last will be first [then].

Matthew 20

For the kingdom of heaven is like the owner of an estate who went out in the morning [a]along with the dawn to hire workmen for his vineyard. After agreeing with the laborers for a denarius a day, he sent them into his vineyard. And going out about the third hour (nine o’clock), he saw others standing idle in the marketplace; And he said to them, You go also into the vineyard, and whatever is right I will pay you. And they went.

He went out again about the sixth hour (noon), and the ninth hour (three o’clock) he did the same. And about the eleventh hour (five o’clock) he went out and found still others standing around, and said to them, Why do you stand here idle all day? They answered him, Because nobody has hired us. He told them, You go out into the vineyard also [b]and you will get whatever is just and fair.

When evening came, the owner of the vineyard said to his manager, Call the workmen and pay them their wages, beginning with the last and ending with the first. And those who had been hired at the eleventh hour (five o’clock) came and received a denarius each. 10 Now when the first came, they supposed they would get more, but each of them also received a denarius. 11 And when they received it, they grumbled at the owner of the estate, 12 Saying, These [men] who came last worked no more than an hour, and yet you have made them rank with us who have borne the burden and the [c]scorching heat of the day. 13 But he answered one of them, Friend, I am doing you no injustice. Did you not agree with me for a denarius? 14 Take what belongs to you and go. I choose to give to this man hired last the same as I give to you. 15 Am I not permitted to do what I choose with what is mine? [Or do you begrudge my being generous?] Is your eye evil because I am good? 16 So those who [now] are last will be first [then], and those who [now] are first will be last [then]. [d]For many are called, but few chosen.

17 And as Jesus was going up to Jerusalem, He took the twelve disciples aside along the way and said to them, 18 Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be handed over to the chief priests and scribes; and they will sentence Him to death 19 And deliver Him over to the Gentiles to be mocked and whipped and crucified, and He will be raised [to life] on the third day.

20 Then the mother of Zebedee’s children came up to Him with her sons and, kneeling, worshiped Him and asked a favor of Him. 21 And He asked her, What do you wish? She answered Him, Give orders that these two sons of mine may sit, one at Your right hand and one at Your left in Your kingdom. 22 But Jesus replied, You do not realize what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I am about to drink [e]and to be baptized with the baptism with which I am baptized? They answered, We are able. 23 He said to them, You will drink My cup, but seats at My right hand and at My left are not Mine to give, but they are for those for whom they have been [f]ordained and prepared by My Father.

24 But when the ten [other disciples] heard this, they were indignant at the two brothers. 25 And Jesus called them to Him and said, You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great men hold them in subjection [tyrannizing over them]. 26 Not so shall it be among you; but whoever wishes to be great among you must be your servant, 27 And whoever desires to be first among you must be your slave— 28 Just as the Son of Man came not to be waited on but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for many [the price paid to set them free].

29 And as they were going out of Jericho, a great throng accompanied Him. 30 And behold, two blind men were sitting by the roadside, and when they heard that Jesus was passing by, they cried out, Lord, have pity and mercy on us, [You] Son of David! 31 The crowds reproved them and told them to keep still; but they cried out all the more, Lord, have pity and mercy on us, [You] Son of David! 32 And Jesus stopped and called them, and asked, What do you want Me to do for you? 33 They answered Him, Lord, we want our eyes to be opened! 34 And Jesus, in pity, touched their eyes; and instantly they received their sight and followed Him.

Matthew 21

And when they came near Jerusalem and had reached Bethphage at the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples on ahead, Saying to them, Go into the village that is opposite you, and at once you will find a donkey tied, and a colt with her; untie [them] and bring [them] to Me. If anyone says anything to you, you shall reply, The Lord needs them, and he will let them go without delay. This happened that what was spoken by the prophet might be fulfilled, saying, Say to the Daughter of Zion [inhabitants of Jerusalem], Behold, your King is coming to you, lowly and riding on a donkey, and on a colt, the foal of a donkey [a beast of burden]. Then the disciples went and did as Jesus had directed them. They brought the donkey and the colt and laid their coats upon them, and He seated Himself on them [the clothing].

And most of the crowd kept spreading their garments on the road, and others kept cutting branches from the trees and scattering them on the road. And the crowds that went ahead of Him and those that followed Him kept shouting, Hosanna ([a]O be propitious, graciously inclined) to the Son of David, [[b]the Messiah]! Blessed (praised, glorified) is He Who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna (O be favorably disposed) in the highest [heaven]!

10 And when He entered Jerusalem, all the city became agitated and [c][trembling with excitement] said, Who is [d]This? 11 And the crowds replied, This is the prophet Jesus from Nazareth of Galilee.

12 And Jesus went into the temple ([e]whole temple enclosure) and drove out all who bought and sold in the [f]sacred place, and He turned over the [g]four-footed tables of the money changers and the chairs of those who sold doves. 13 He said to them, The Scripture says, My house shall be called a house of prayer; but you have made it a den of robbers.

14 And the blind and the lame came to Him in the [h]porches and courts of the temple, and He cured them. 15 But when the chief priests and the scribes saw the wonderful things that He did and the boys and the girls and the [i]youths and the maidens crying out in the [j]porches and courts of the temple, Hosanna (O be propitious, graciously inclined) to the Son of David! they were indignant. 16 And they said to Him, Do You hear what these are saying? And Jesus replied to them, Yes; have you never read, Out of the mouths of babes and unweaned infants You have made (provided) perfect praise? 17 And leaving them, He departed from the city and went out to Bethany and lodged there.

18 In the early dawn the next morning, as He was coming back to the city, He was hungry. 19 And as He saw [k]one single leafy fig tree [l]above the roadside, He went to it but He found nothing but leaves on it [[m]seeing that in the fig tree the fruit appears at the same time as the leaves]. And He said to it, Never again shall fruit grow on you! And the fig tree withered up at once. 20 When the disciples saw it, they marveled greatly and asked, How is it that the fig tree has withered away all at once?

21 And Jesus answered them, Truly I say to you, if you have faith (a [n]firm relying trust) and do not doubt, you will not only do what has been done to the fig tree, but even if you say to this mountain, Be taken up and cast into the sea, it will be done. 22 And whatever you ask for in prayer, having faith and [really] believing, you will receive.

23 And when He entered the sacred [o]enclosure of the temple, the chief priests and elders of the people came up to Him as He was teaching and said, By what [p]power of authority are You doing these things, and who gave You this power of authority? 24 Jesus answered them, I also will ask you a question, and if you give Me the answer, then I also will tell you by what [q]power of authority I do these things. 25 The baptism of John—from where was it? From heaven or from men? And they reasoned and argued with one another, If we say, From heaven, [r]He will ask us, Why then did you not believe him? 26 But if we say, From men—we are afraid of and must reckon with the multitude, for they all regard John as a prophet. 27 So they answered Jesus, We do not know. And He said to them, Neither will I tell you by what [s]power of authority I do these things.

28 What do you think? There was a man who had two sons. He came to the first and said, Son, go and work today in the vineyard. 29 And he answered, I will not; but afterward he changed his mind and went. 30 Then the man came to the second and said the same [thing]. And he replied, I will [go], sir; but he did not go. 31 Which of the two did the will of the father? They replied, The first one. Jesus said to them, Truly I tell you, the tax collectors and the harlots will get into the kingdom of heaven before you. 32 For John came to you walking in the way of an upright man in right standing with God, and you did not believe him, but the tax collectors and the harlots did believe him; and you, even when you saw that, did not afterward change your minds and believe him [adhere to, trust in, and rely on what he told you].

33 Listen to another parable: There was a master of a house who planted a vineyard and put a hedge around it and dug a wine vat in it and built a watchtower. Then he let it out [for rent] to tenants and went into another country. 34 When the fruit season drew near, he sent his servants to the tenants to get his [share of the] fruit. 35 But the tenants took his servants and beat one, killed another, and stoned another.36 Again he sent other servants, more than the first time, and they treated them the same way.37 Finally he sent his own son to them, saying, They will respect and give heed to my son. 38 But when the tenants saw the son, they said to themselves, This is the heir; come on, let us kill him and have his inheritance. 39 And they took him and threw him out of the vineyard and killed him. 40 Now when the owner of the vineyard comes back, what will he do to those tenants?

41 They said to Him, He will put those wretches to a miserable death and rent the vineyard to other tenants [t]of such a character that they will give him the fruits promptly in their season. 42 Jesus asked them, Have you never read in the Scriptures: The very Stone which the builders rejected and threw away has become the Cornerstone; this is the Lord’s doing, and it is marvelous in our eyes? 43 I tell you, for this reason the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people who will produce the fruits of it. 44 [u]And whoever falls on this Stone will be broken to pieces, but he on whom It falls will be crushed to powder [and It will [v]winnow him, [w]scattering him like dust].

45 And when the chief priests and the Pharisees heard His parables (comparisons, stories used to illustrate and explain), they perceived that He was talking about them. 46 And although they were trying to arrest Him, they feared the throngs because they regarded Him as a prophet

Matthew 22

And again Jesus spoke to them in parables (comparisons, stories used to illustrate and explain), saying, The kingdom of heaven is like a king who gave a wedding banquet for his son And sent his servants to summon those who had been invited to the wedding banquet, but they refused to come. Again he sent other servants, saying, Tell those who are invited, Behold, I have prepared my banquet; my bullocks and my fat calves are killed, and everything is prepared; come to the wedding feast.

But they were not concerned and paid no attention [they ignored and made light of the summons, treating it with contempt] and they went away—one to his farm, another to his business, While the others seized his servants, treated them shamefully, and put them to death. [Hearing this] the king was infuriated; and he sent his soldiers and put those murderers to death and burned their city.

Then he said to his servants, The wedding [feast] is prepared, but those invited were not worthy. So go to the thoroughfares where they leave the city [where the main roads and those from the country end] and invite to the wedding feast as many as you find. 10 And those servants went out on the crossroads and got together as many as they found, both bad and good, so [the room in which] the wedding feast [was held] was filled with guests.

11 But when the king came in to view the guests, he looked intently at a man there who had on no wedding garment. 12 And he said, Friend, how did you come in here without putting on the [appropriate] wedding garment? And he was speechless ([a]muzzled, gagged). 13 Then the king said to the attendants, Tie him hand and foot, and throw him into the darkness outside; there will be weeping and grinding of teeth. 14 For many are called (invited and summoned), but few are chosen.

15 Then the Pharisees went and consulted and plotted together how they might entangle Jesus in His talk. 16 And they sent their disciples to Him along with the Herodians, saying, Teacher, we know that You are [b]sincere and what You profess to be and that You teach the way of God truthfully, regardless of consequences and being afraid of no man; for You are impartial and do not regard either the person or the position of anyone. 17 Tell us then what You think about this: Is it lawful to pay tribute [levied on individuals and to be paid yearly] to Caesar or not?

18 But Jesus, aware of their malicious plot, asked, Why do you put Me to the test and try to entrap Me, you pretenders (hypocrites)? 19 Show me the money used for the tribute. And they brought Him a denarius. 20 And Jesus said to them, Whose likeness and title are these? 21 They said, Caesar’s. Then He said to them, Pay therefore to Caesar the things that are due to Caesar, and pay to God the things that are due to God. 22 When they heard it they were amazed and marveled; and they left Him and departed.

23 The same day some Sadducees, who say that there is no resurrection [of the dead], came to Him and they asked Him a question, 24 Saying, Teacher, Moses said, If a man dies, leaving no children, his brother shall marry the widow and raise up a family for his brother. 25 Now there were seven brothers among us; the first married and died, and, having no children, left his wife to his brother. 26 The second also died childless, and the third, down to the seventh. 27 Last of all, the woman died also. 28 Now, in the resurrection, to which of the seven will she be wife? For they all had her. 29 But Jesus replied to them, You are wrong because you know neither the Scriptures nor God’s power. 30 For in the resurrected state neither do [men] marry nor are [women] given in marriage, but they are like the angels in heaven. 31 But as to the resurrection of the dead—have you never read what was said to you by God, 32 I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? He is not the God of the dead but of the living! 33 And when the throng heard it, they were astonished and filled with [[c]glad] amazement at His teaching.

34 Now when the Pharisees heard that He had silenced ([d]muzzled) the Sadducees, they gathered together. 35 And one of their number, a lawyer, asked Him a question to test Him. 36 Teacher, which [e]kind of commandment is great and important (the principal kind) in the Law? [Some commandments are light—which are heavy?] 37 And He replied to him, You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind (intellect). 38 This is the great (most important, principal) and first commandment. 39 And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as [you do] yourself. 40 These two commandments [f]sum up and upon them depend all the Law and the Prophets.

41 Now while the Pharisees were still assembled there, Jesus asked them a question, 42 Saying, What do you think of the Christ? Whose Son is He? They said to Him, The Son of David. 43 He said to them, How is it then that David, under the influence of the [Holy] Spirit, calls Him Lord, saying, 44 The Lord said to My Lord, Sit at My right hand until I put Your enemies under Your feet? 45 If then David thus calls Him Lord, how is He his Son? 46 And no one was able to answer Him a word, nor from that day did anyone venture or dare to question Him.

Matthew 23

Then Jesus said to the multitudes and to His disciples, The scribes and Pharisees sit on Moses’ seat [of authority]. So observe and practice all they tell you; but do not do what they do, for they preach, but do not practice. They tie up heavy loads, hard to bear, and place them on men’s shoulders, but they themselves will not lift a finger to help bear them. They do all their works to be seen of men; for they make wide their phylacteries ([a]small cases enclosing certain Scripture passages, worn during prayer on the left arm and forehead) and make long their fringes [worn by all male Israelites, according to the command]. And they [b]take pleasure in and [thus] love the place of honor at feasts and the best seats in the synagogues, And to be greeted with honor in the marketplaces and to have people call them rabbi. But you are not to be called rabbi (teacher), for you have one Teacher and you are all brothers. And do not call anyone [in the church] on earth father, for you have one Father, Who is in heaven. 10 And you must not be called masters (leaders), for you have one Master (Leader), the Christ.

11 He who is greatest among you shall be your servant. 12 Whoever exalts himself [[c]with haughtiness and empty pride] shall be humbled (brought low), and whoever humbles himself [whoever has a modest opinion of himself and behaves accordingly] shall be [d]raised to honor.

13 But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, pretenders (hypocrites)! For you shut the kingdom of heaven in men’s faces; for you neither enter yourselves, nor do you allow those who are about to go in to do so.

14 [e]Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, pretenders (hypocrites)! For you swallow up widows’ houses and for a pretense to cover it up make long prayers; therefore you will receive the greater condemnation and the heavier sentence.

15 Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, pretenders (hypocrites)! For you travel over sea and land to make a single proselyte, and when he becomes one [a proselyte], you make him doubly as much a child of hell (Gehenna) as you are.

16 Woe to you, blind guides, who say, If anyone swears by the [f]sanctuary of the temple, it is nothing; but if anyone swears by the gold of the [g]sanctuary, he is a debtor [bound by his oath]. 17 You blind fools! For which is greater: the gold, or the [h]sanctuary of the temple that has made the gold sacred?

18 You say too, Whoever swears by the altar is not duty bound; but whoever swears by the offering on the altar, his oath is binding. 19 You blind men! Which is greater: the gift, or the altar which makes the gift sacred?

20 So whoever swears by the altar swears by it and by everything on it. 21 And he who swears by the [i]sanctuary of the temple swears by it and by Him Who dwells in it. 22 And whoever swears by heaven swears by the throne of God and by Him Who sits upon it.

23 Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, pretenders (hypocrites)! For you give a tenth of your mint and dill and cummin, and have neglected and omitted the weightier (more important) matters of the Law—right and justice and mercy and fidelity. These you ought [particularly] to have done, without neglecting the others.

24 You blind guides, filtering out a gnat and gulping down a [j]camel!

25 Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, pretenders (hypocrites)! For you clean the outside of the cup and of the plate, but within they are full of extortion (prey, spoil, plunder) and grasping self-indulgence. 26 You blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup and of the plate, so that the outside may be clean also.

27 Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, pretenders (hypocrites)! For you are like tombs that have been whitewashed, which look beautiful on the outside but inside are full of dead men’s bones and everything impure. 28 Just so, you also outwardly seem to people to be just and upright but inside you are full of pretense and lawlessness and iniquity.

29 Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, pretenders (hypocrites)! For you build tombs for the prophets and decorate the monuments of the righteous, 30 Saying, If we had lived in the days of our forefathers, we would not have aided them in shedding the blood of the prophets. 31 Thus you are testifying against yourselves that you are the descendants of those who murdered the prophets. 32 Fill up, then, the measure of your fathers’ sins to the brim [so [k]that nothing may be wanting to a full measure]. 33 You serpents! You spawn of vipers! How can you escape the [l]penalty to be suffered in hell (Gehenna)?

34 Because of this, take notice: I am sending you prophets and wise men (interpreters and teachers) and scribes (men learned in the Mosaic Law and the Prophets); some of them you will kill, even crucify, and some you will flog in your synagogues and pursue and persecute from town to town, 35 So that upon your heads may come all the blood of the righteous ([m]those who correspond to the divine standard of right) shed on earth, from the blood of the righteous Abel to the blood of Zechariah son of Barachiah, whom you murdered between the sanctuary and the altar [of burnt offering].

36 Truly I declare to you, all these [[n]evil, calamitous times] will come upon this generation.

37 O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, murdering the prophets and stoning those who are sent to you! How often would I have gathered your children together as a mother fowl gathers her brood under her wings, and you refused! 38 Behold, your house is forsaken and desolate (abandoned and left destitute of God’s help). 39 For I declare to you, you will not see Me again until you say, Blessed (magnified in worship, adored, and exalted) is He Who comes in the name of the Lord!

Matthew 24

Jesus departed from the temple [a]area and was going on His way when His disciples came up to Him to call His attention to the buildings of the temple and point them out to Him. But He answered them, Do you see all these? Truly I tell you, there will not be left here one stone upon another that will not be thrown down.

While He was seated on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to Him privately and said, Tell us, when will this take place, and what will be the sign of Your coming and of the end (the completion, the consummation) of the age? Jesus answered them, Be careful that no one misleads you [deceiving you and leading you into error]. For many will come in (on the strength of) My name [[b]appropriating the name which belongs to Me], saying, I am the Christ (the Messiah), and they will lead many astray.

And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars; see that you are not frightened or troubled, for this must take place, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and there will be famines and earthquakes in place after place; All this is but the beginning [the early pains] of the [c]birth pangs [of the [d]intolerable anguish].

Then they will hand you over to suffer affliction and tribulation and put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations for My name’s sake. 10 And then many will be offended and repelled and will [e]begin to distrust and desert [Him Whom they ought to trust and obey] and will stumble and fall away and betray one another and pursue one another with hatred. 11 And many false prophets will rise up and deceive and lead many into error. 12 And the love of [f]the great body of people will grow cold because of the multiplied lawlessness and iniquity, 13 But he who endures to the end will be saved.

14 And this good news of the kingdom (the Gospel) will be preached throughout the whole world as a testimony to all the nations, and then will come the end. 15 So when you see the appalling sacrilege [the abomination that astonishes and makes desolate], spoken of by the prophet Daniel, standing in the Holy Place—let the reader take notice and [g]ponder and consider and heed [this]— 16 Then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains; 17 Let him who is on the housetop not come down and go into the house to take anything; 18 And let him who is in the field not turn back to get his overcoat. 19 And alas for the women who are pregnant and for those who have nursing babies in those days! 20 Pray that your flight may not be in winter or on a Sabbath.

21 For then there will be great tribulation (affliction, distress, and oppression) such as has not been from the beginning of the world until now—no, and never will be [again]. 22 And if those days had not been shortened, no human being would endure and survive, but for the sake of the elect (God’s chosen ones) those days will be shortened. 23 If anyone says to you then, Behold, here is the Christ (the Messiah)! or, There He is!—do not believe it. 24 For false Christs and false prophets will arise, and they will show great signs and wonders so as to deceive and lead astray, if possible, even the elect (God’s chosen ones).

25 See, I have warned you beforehand. 26 So if they say to you, Behold, He is in the wilderness (desert)—do not go out there; if they tell you, Behold, He is in the secret places or inner rooms—do not believe it. 27 For just as the lightning flashes from the east and shines and [h]is seen as far as the west, so will the coming of the Son of Man be.

28 Wherever there is a fallen body (a corpse), there the vultures (or eagles) will flock together. 29 Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not shed its light, and the stars will fall from the sky, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken.

30 Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn and [i]beat their breasts and lament in anguish, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory [in brilliancy and splendor]. 31 And He will send out His angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather His elect (His chosen ones) from the four winds, [even] from one end of the [j]universe to the other.

32 From the fig tree learn this lesson: as soon as its [k]young shoots become soft and tender and it puts out its leaves, you know [l]of a surety that summer is near. 33 So also when you see these signs, [m]all taken together, coming to pass, you may know [n]of a surety that He is near, at the very doors. 34 Truly I tell you, this generation ([o]the whole multitude of people living at the same time, [p]in a definite, [q]given period) will not pass away till all these things [r]taken together take place. 35 [s]Sky and earth will pass away, but My words will not pass away.

36 But of that [exact] day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. 37 As were the days of Noah, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. 38 For just as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, [men] marrying and [women] being given in marriage, until the [very] day when Noah went into the ark, 39 And they did not know or understand until the flood came and swept them all away—so will be the coming of the Son of Man. 40 At that time two men will be in the field; one will be taken and one will be left. 41 Two women will be grinding at the hand mill; one will be taken and one will be left. 42 Watch therefore [[t]give strict attention, be cautious and active], for you do not know in what kind of a day [[u]whether a near or remote one] your Lord is coming.

43 But understand this: had the householder known in what [part of the night, whether in a [v]night or a morning] watch the thief was coming, he would have watched and would not have allowed his house to be [w]undermined and broken into. 44 You also must be ready therefore, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour when you do not expect Him.

45 Who then is the faithful, thoughtful, and wise servant, whom his master has put in charge of his household to give to the others the food and supplies at the proper time? 46 Blessed (happy, fortunate, and [x]to be envied) is that servant whom, when his master comes, he will find so doing. 47 I solemnly declare to you, he will set him over all his possessions.

48 But if that servant is wicked and says to himself, My master is delayed and is going to be gone a long time, 49 And begins to beat his fellow servants and to eat and drink with the drunken, 50 The master of that servant will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour of which he is not aware, 51 And will punish him [[y]cut him up by scourging] and put him with the pretenders (hypocrites); there will be weeping and grinding of teeth.

And the Women of the Lord cry “Amen”

#Lessonsfromlent

The shouting blind men are pushing their way to the forefront of my heart today.

29 And as they were going out of Jericho, a great throng accompanied Him. 30 And behold, two blind men were sitting by the roadside, and when they heard that Jesus was passing by, they cried out, Lord, have pity and mercy on us, [You] Son of David! 31 The crowds reproved them and told them to keep still; but they cried out all the more, Lord, have pity and mercy on us, [You] Son of David! 32 And Jesus stopped and called them, and asked, What do you want Me to do for you? 33 They answered Him, Lord, we want our eyes to be opened! 34 And Jesus, in pity, touched their eyes; and instantly they received their sight and followed Him.  Matthew 20:29-34

These two men cried out to Jesus from right where they were.  They didn’t have the ability to make themselves presentable, clean themselves up before they met the Messiah.  They knew their need, they knew He was near and they would not be silenced.  The crowds tried to quiet them but they “cried out all the more” and for all the veracity they showed in getting His attention the request seems to ooze humility. . . “have pity and mercy.”  And then the sound of Christ, not the reprove of the crowd, but the open invitation . . . the chance to petition for healing. “Lord, we want our eyes to be opened!”  And the Savior reached out, touched the untouchable, and blessed with sight.  How could they keep from following Him?  What divine compulsion must have moved their feet?

Sister, here’s the comparison I see to my own life.  I met Jesus on the roadside.  No chance and no way to make myself presentable to my Messiah. After years of sitting in the dust unwilling to see, I knew my need and I cried out to the Healer.  Were there some in the crowd that tried to quiet me, to keep me on the roadside? There were.  But the sound of Christ, the open invitation to boldly lay my need before Him silenced them all. “Lord, open my eyes!” and the Savior reached out, touched the untouchable, and blessed with sight.  And divine compulsion moved my feet to follow Him.

Girlfriend, wherever you are right now, Jesus is near and He will hear you.  You cannot clean yourself up or wipe the dust off your own heart.  See your need Sweet One and shout to the Healer of your soul.  Even when the crowds are hushing you . . . cry out to Jesus!  Don’t let the voices of this world keep you on the roadside.  Lay it all before Him . . . “Lord, open my eyes” and the Savior will reach out, touch your soul, and heal your heart.  You will be blessed with sight Sister and you will stride out with joy to follow Him.

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He hears . . .He heals.  #lessonsfromlent

Lessons From Lent: Day Three

20 Feb

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An Explanation of Lessons from Lent

In the next 40 days (38 now because you have already accomplished two), the weeks leading up to Easter, the posts on Glimpsed Glory will be different. I am reading through the New Testament during this time and I am hoping the Holy Spirit will lead me to a fresh revelation each and every day. I’m going into it with a prayerful heart and an expectant spirit but I will fully confess to you that my soul feels sluggish.

I have been in a place of exhaustion over these last months. My mind has been clouded, my body has ached and insomnia has been my companion since late December. The enemy has been and is still whispering in my ear that my Jesus has forgotten me . . . that He has finally tired of my imperfections and left me behind.

I’m not giving in to it! I am going to fight the good fight of faith and follow the example of my Nehemiah Man. I am going to stand firm in my faith because if I do not, I will not stand at all. I’m praising God for bringing me to a place of emptiness so that I can look to Him to fill my cup.

I’m coming before the Lord and I’m asking Him to do a new thing in me. To rouse my heart to His side and to draw me near in real and tangible ways. To plow through the fog that has settled over me in the form of health issues, physical stress, and emotional upheaval and lay a level path before me. I’m entering the throne room and I’m humbly reminding Him that He has invited me to come in my time of need. O Lord – be near to me. Love me where I am. Take me where I need to be.

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That’s the cry of my heart Sweet Sister and I’m thinking that if I am in this place that perhaps you are too. It might be that different life situations have brought us here but here we are. If that’s the case, I want you to know that you are not alone and that you have a faith sister to walk through it with. We can do this together – you and I. It’s why God gave us to one another. We can join our hearts and we can offer up the next 40 days to the Beautiful One and trust Him to do the beautiful thing in us.

So here’s what I’ll do. I’ll post the daily reading on the blog (except for Sundays) and if you read the Scriptures not only will you have read through the entire New Testament by Easter but God promises that He’ll show you deep and unsearchable things you do not know. He promises that His word is alive and active and will transform your heart. I could use some transformation. What about you?

At the end of the daily passage, I’m going to share my “Lesson from Lent” – nothing long or drawn out just something that God uses to speak straight to my heart from the Scripture that day. I’m putting it at the end because if your time runs short on a particular day – I want you to skip reading my words, not His.

I’m hoping that you’ll start your own running record of what God is showing you. Maybe you’ll even be moved to leave a comment so your Sisters can glean from what you’re learning. No matter how you choose to keep track of all He shares with you . . . treasure it up in your heart Sweet One, meditate on it, mull it over, consider the whisper of the Lover of your soul. The God of the Universe is the only Voice we need to revive our tired souls. So, let’s you and I lean in close, pray for ears to hear and hearts to respond. Let’s dig in to the riches He has given us and prepare to be amazed by what He will reveal to our expectant hearts. O Sister, let’s boldly ask Him for a lesson from Lent and then brace ourselves for a glimpse of Glory!

Day Three

February 20, 2015 ~~ Matthew 13-18

Amplified Bible

Footnotes: I’ve left the footnotes in place if you would like to track down sources in word study and language. Please follow the link to each chapter and scroll to the bottom of the passage.

Matthew 13

That same day Jesus went out of the house and was sitting beside the sea. But such great crowds gathered about Him that He got into a boat and remained sitting there, while all the throng stood on the shore.

And He told them many things in parables (stories by way of illustration and comparison), saying, A sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seeds fell by the roadside, and the birds came and ate them up. Other seeds fell on rocky ground, where they had not much soil; and at once they sprang up, because they had no depth of soil.But when the sun rose, they were scorched, and because they had no root, they dried up and withered away. Other seeds fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked them out. Other seeds fell on good soil, and yielded grain—some a hundred times as much as was sown, some sixty times as much, and some thirty.

He who has ears [to hear], let him be listening and let him [a]consider and [b]perceive and comprehend by hearing.

10 Then the disciples came to Him and said, Why do You speak to them in parables? 11 And He replied to them, To you it has been given to know the secrets and mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given. 12 For whoever has [spiritual knowledge], to him will more be given and he will [c]be furnished richly so that he will have abundance; but from him who has not, even what he has will be taken away. 13 This is the reason that I speak to them in parables: because [d]having the power of seeing, they do not see; and [e]having the power of hearing, they do not hear, nor do they grasp and understand.

14 In them indeed is [f]the process of fulfillment of the prophecy of Isaiah, which says: You shall indeed hear and hear but never grasp and understand; and you shall indeed look and look but never see and perceive.

15 For this nation’s heart has grown gross (fat and dull), and their ears heavy and difficult of hearing, and their eyes they have tightly closed, lest they see and perceive with their eyes, and hear and comprehend the sense with their ears, and grasp and understand with their heart, and turn and I should heal them.

16 But blessed (happy, fortunate, and [g]to be envied) are your eyes because they do see, and your ears because they do hear. 17 Truly I tell you, many prophets and righteous men [men who were upright and in right standing with God] yearned to see what you see, and did not see it, and to hear what you hear, and did not hear it.

18 Listen then to the [meaning of the] parable of the sower:

19 [h]While anyone is hearing the Word of the kingdom and does not grasp and comprehend it, the evil one comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart. This is what was sown along the roadside. 20 As for what was sown on thin (rocky) soil, this is he who hears the Word and at once welcomes and accepts it with joy; 21 Yet it has no real root in him, but is temporary (inconstant, [i]lasts but a little while); and when affliction or trouble or persecution comes on account of the Word, at once he is caused to stumble [he is repelled and [j]begins to distrust and desert Him Whom he ought to trust and obey] and he falls away. 22 As for what was sown among thorns, this is he who hears the Word, but the cares of the world and the pleasure and delight and glamour and deceitfulness of riches choke and suffocate the Word, and it yields no fruit. 23 As for what was sown on good soil, this is he who hears the Word and grasps and comprehends it; he indeed bears fruit and yields in one case a hundred times as much as was sown, in another sixty times as much, and in another thirty.

24 Another parable He set forth before them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his field. 25 But while he was sleeping, his enemy came and sowed also darnel (weeds resembling wheat) among the wheat, and went on his way. 26 So when the plants sprouted and formed grain, the darnel (weeds) appeared also. 27 And the servants of the owner came to him and said, Sir, did you not sow good seed in your field? Then how does it have darnel shoots in it? 28 He replied to them, An enemy has done this. The servants said to him, Then do you want us to go and weed them out? 29 But he said, No, lest in gathering the wild wheat (weeds resembling wheat), you root up the [true] wheat along with it. 30 Let them grow together until the harvest; and at harvest time I will say to the reapers, Gather the darnel first and bind it in bundles to be burned, but gather the wheat into my granary.

31 Another story by way of comparison He set forth before them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is like a grain of mustard seed, which a man took and sowed in his field. 32 Of all the seeds it is the smallest, but when it has grown it is the largest of the garden herbs and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and find shelter in its branches.

33 He told them another parable: The kingdom of heaven is like leaven ([k]sour dough) which a woman took and covered over in three measures of meal or flour till all of it was leavened.

34 These things [l]all taken together Jesus said to the crowds in parables; indeed, without a parable He said nothing to them. 35 This was in fulfillment of what was spoken by the prophet: I will open My mouth in parables; I will utter things that have been hidden since the foundation of the world.

36 Then He left the throngs and went into the house. And His disciples came to Him saying, Explain to us the parable of the darnel in the field.

37 He answered, He Who sows the good seed is the Son of Man. 38 The field is the world, and the good seed means the children of the kingdom; the darnel is the children of the evil one, 39 And the enemy who sowed it is the devil. The harvest is the close and consummation of the age, and the reapers are angels. 40 Just as the darnel (weeds resembling wheat) is gathered and burned with fire, so it will be at the close of the age. 41 The Son of Man will send forth His angels, and they will gather out of His kingdom all causes of offense [[m]persons by whom others are drawn into error or sin] and all who do iniquity and act wickedly, 42 And will cast them into the furnace of fire; there will be weeping and wailing and grinding of teeth. 43 Then will the righteous (those who are upright and in right standing with God) shine forth like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Let him who has ears [to hear] be listening, and let him [n]consider and perceive and understand by hearing.

44 The kingdom of heaven is like [o]something precious buried in a field, which a man found and hid again; then in his joy he goes and sells all he has and buys that field.

45 Again the kingdom of heaven is like a man who is a dealer in search of fine and [p]precious pearls, 46 Who, on finding a single pearl of great price, went and sold all he had and bought it.

47 Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a [q]dragnet which was cast into the sea and gathered in fish of every sort. 48 When it was full, men dragged it up on the beach, and sat down and sorted out the good fish into baskets, but the worthless ones they threw away. 49 So it will be at the close and consummation of the age. The angels will go forth and separate the wicked from the righteous (those who are upright and in right standing with God) 50 And cast them [the wicked] into the furnace of fire; there will be weeping and wailing and grinding of teeth.

51 Have you understood [r]all these things [parables] taken together? They said to Him, Yes, Lord.

52 He said to them, Therefore every [s]teacher and interpreter of the Sacred Writings who has been instructed about and trained for the kingdom of heaven and has [t]become a disciple is like a householder who brings forth out of his storehouse treasure that is new and [treasure that is] old [the fresh as well as the familiar].

53 When Jesus had finished these parables (these comparisons), He left there.

54 And coming to His own country [Nazareth], He taught in their synagogue so that they were amazed with bewildered wonder, and said, Where did this [u]Man get this wisdom and these miraculous powers? 55 Is not this the carpenter’s Son? Is not His mother called Mary? And are not His brothers James and Joseph and Simon and Judas? 56 And do not all His sisters live here among us? Where then did this Man get all this? 57 And they took offense at Him [they were repelled and hindered from acknowledging His authority, and caused to stumble]. But Jesus said to them, A prophet is not without honor except in his own country and in his own house.

58 And He did not do many works of power there, because of their unbelief (their lack of faith [v]in the divine mission of Jesus).

Matthew 14

At that time Herod the governor heard the reports about Jesus, And he said to his attendants, This is John the Baptist; He has been raised from the dead, and that is why the powers [a]of performing miracles are at work in Him. For Herod had arrested John and bound him and put him in prison [to [b]stow him out of the way] on account and for the sake of Herodias, his brother Philip’s wife, For John had said to him, It is not lawful or right for you to have her. Although he wished to have him put to death, he was afraid of the people, for they regarded John as a prophet. But when Herod’s birthday came, the daughter of Herodias danced in the midst [before the company] and pleased and fascinated Herod, And so he promised with an oath to give her whatever she might ask. And she, being put forward and prompted by her mother, said, Give me the head of John the Baptist right here on a [c]platter. And the king was distressed and sorry, but because of his oaths and his guests, he ordered it to be given her; 10 He sent and had John beheaded in the prison. 11 And his head was brought in on a [d]platter and given [e]to the little maid, and she brought it to her mother. 12 And John’s disciples came and took up the body and buried it. Then they went and told Jesus. 13 When Jesus heard it, He withdrew from there privately in a boat to a solitary place. But when the crowds heard of it, they followed Him [by land] on foot from the towns. 14 When He went ashore and saw a great throng of people, He had compassion (pity and deep sympathy) for them and cured their sick.

15 When evening came, the disciples came to Him and said, This is a remote and barren place, and the day is now over; send the throngs away into the villages to buy food for themselves. 16 Jesus said, They do not need to go away; you give them something to eat. 17 They said to Him, We have nothing here but five loaves and two fish. 18 He said, Bring them here to Me. 19 Then He ordered the crowds to recline on the grass; and He took the five loaves and the two fish, and, looking up to heaven, He gave thanks and blessed and broke the loaves and handed the pieces to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the people. 20 And they all ate and were satisfied. And they picked up twelve [[f]small hand] baskets full of the broken pieces left over. 21 And those who ate were about 5,000 men, not including women and children.

22 Then He directed the disciples to get into the boat and go before Him to the other side, while He sent away the crowds. 23 And after He had dismissed the multitudes, He went up into the hills by Himself to pray. When it was evening, He was still there alone. 24 But the boat was by this time out on the sea, many furlongs [a furlong is one-eighth of a mile] distant from the land, beaten and tossed by the waves, for the wind was against them. 25 And in the fourth watch [between 3:00—6:00 a.m.] of the night, Jesus came to them, walking on the sea.

26 And when the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were terrified and said, It is a ghost! And they screamed out with fright. 27 But instantly He spoke to them, saying, Take courage! I Am! Stop being afraid! 28 And Peter answered Him, Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water. 29 He said, Come! So Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water, and he came toward Jesus. 30 But when he perceived and felt the strong wind, he was frightened, and as he began to sink, he cried out, Lord, save me [from death]! 31 Instantly Jesus reached out His hand and caught and held him, saying to him, O you of little faith, why did you doubt? 32 And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased. 33 And those in the boat knelt and worshiped Him, saying, Truly You are the Son of God!

34 And when they had crossed over to the other side, they went ashore at Gennesaret. 35 And when the men of that place recognized Him, they sent around into all the surrounding country and brought to Him all who were sick 36 And begged Him to let them merely touch the fringe of His garment; and as many as touched it were perfectly restored.

Matthew 15

Then from Jerusalem came scribes and Pharisees and said, Why do Your disciples transgress

and violate the rules handed down by the elders of the past? For they do not practice [ceremonially] washing their hands before they eat. He replied to them, And why also do you transgress and violate the commandment of God for the sake of the rules handed down to you by your forefathers (the elders)? For God commanded, Honor your father and your mother, and, He who curses or reviles or speaks evil of or abuses or treats improperly his father or mother, let him surely come to his end by death. But you say, If anyone tells his father or mother, What you would have gained from me [that is, the money and whatever I have that might be used for helping you] is already dedicated as a gift to God, then he is exempt and no longer under obligation to honor and help his father or his mother. So for the sake of your tradition (the rules handed down by your forefathers), you have set aside the Word of God [depriving it of force and authority and making it of no effect].

You pretenders (hypocrites)! Admirably and truly did Isaiah prophesy of you when he said: These people draw near Me with their mouths and honor Me with their lips, but their hearts hold off and are far away from Me. Uselessly do they worship Me, for they teach as doctrines the commands of men.

10 And Jesus called the people to Him and said to them, Listen and grasp and comprehend this: 11 It is not what goes into the mouth of a man that makes him unclean and defiled, but what comes out of the mouth; this makes a man unclean and defiles [him]. 12 Then the disciples came and said to Him, Do You know that the Pharisees were displeased and offended and indignant when they heard this saying?

13 He answered, Every plant which My heavenly Father has not planted will be torn up by the roots. 14 Let them alone and disregard them; they are blind guides and teachers. And if a blind man leads a blind man, both will fall into a ditch.

15 But Peter said to Him, Explain this [a]proverb (this [b]maxim) to us. 16 And He said, Are you also even yet dull and ignorant [without understanding and [c]unable to put things together]? 17 Do you not see and understand that whatever goes into the mouth passes into the [d]abdomen and so passes on into the place where discharges are deposited? 18 But whatever comes out of the mouth comes from the heart, and this is what makes a man unclean and defiles [him]. 19 For out of the heart come evil thoughts (reasonings and disputings and designs) such as murder, adultery, sexual vice, theft, false witnessing, slander, and irreverent speech. 20 These are what make a man unclean and defile [him]; but eating with unwashed hands does not make him unclean or defile [him].

21 And going away from there, Jesus withdrew to the district of Tyre and Sidon.

22 And behold, a woman who was a Canaanite from that district came out and, with a [loud, troublesomely urgent] cry, begged, Have mercy on me, O Lord, Son of David! My daughter is miserably and distressingly and cruelly possessed by a demon! 23 But He did not answer her a word. And His disciples came and implored Him, saying, Send her away, for she is crying out after us. 24 He answered, I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. 25 But she came and, kneeling, worshiped Him and kept praying, Lord, help me! 26 And He answered, It is not right (proper, becoming, or fair) to take the children’s bread and throw it to the [e]little dogs. 27 She said, Yes, Lord, yet even the little pups ([f]little whelps) eat the crumbs that fall from their [young] masters’ table. 28 Then Jesus answered her, O woman, great is your faith! Be it done for you as you wish. And her daughter was cured from that [g]moment.

29 And Jesus went on from there and passed along the shore of the Sea of Galilee. Then He went up into the hills and kept sitting there. 30 And a great multitude came to Him, bringing with them the lame, the maimed, the blind, the dumb, and many others, and they put them down at His feet; and He cured them, 31 So that the crowd was amazed when they saw the dumb speaking, the maimed made whole, the lame walking, and the blind seeing; and they [h]recognized and praised and thanked and glorified the God of Israel.

32 Then Jesus called His disciples to Him and said, I have pity and sympathy and am deeply moved for the crowd, because they have been with Me now three days and they have nothing [at all left] to eat; and I am not willing to send them away hungry, lest they faint or become exhausted on the way. 33 And the disciples said to Him, Where are we to get bread sufficient to feed so great a crowd in this isolated and desert place? 34 And Jesus asked them, How many loaves of bread do you have? They replied, Seven, and a few small fish. 35 And ordering the crowd to recline on the ground, 36 He took the seven loaves and the fish, and when He had given thanks, He broke them and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the people. 37 And they all ate and were satisfied. And they gathered up seven [[i]large provision] baskets full of the broken pieces that were left over. 38 Those who ate were 4,000 men, not including the women and the children.

39 Then He dismissed the crowds, got into the boat, and went to the district of Magadan.

Matthew 16

Now the Pharisees and Sadducees came up to Jesus, and they asked Him to show them a sign (spectacular miracle) from heaven [attesting His divine authority]. He replied to them, [a]When it is evening you say, It will be fair weather, for the sky is red, And in the morning, It will be stormy today, for the sky is red and has a gloomy and threatening look. You know how to interpret the appearance of the sky, but you cannot interpret the signs of the times. A wicked and morally unfaithful generation craves a sign, but no sign shall be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah. Then He left them and went away.

When the disciples reached the other side of the sea, they found that they had forgotten to bring any bread. Jesus said to them, Be careful and on your guard against the leaven (ferment) of the Pharisees and Sadducees. And they reasoned among themselves about it, saying, It is because we did not bring any bread. But Jesus, aware of this, asked, Why are you discussing among yourselves the fact that you have no bread? O you [men, how little trust you have in Me, how] little faith! Do you not yet discern (perceive and understand)? Do you not remember the five loaves of the five thousand, and how many [[b]small hand] baskets you gathered? 10 Nor the seven loaves for the four thousand, and how many [[c]large provision] baskets you took up? 11 How is it that you fail to understand that I was not talking to you about bread? But beware of the leaven (ferment) of the Pharisees and Sadducees. 12 Then they discerned that He did not tell them to beware of the leaven of bread, but of the teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees.

13 Now when Jesus went into the region of Caesarea Philippi, He asked His disciples, Who do people say that the Son of Man is? 14 And they answered, Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets. 15 He said to them, But who do you [yourselves] say that I am? 16 Simon Peter replied, You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.

17 Then Jesus answered him, Blessed (happy, fortunate, and [d]to be envied) are you, Simon Bar-Jonah. For flesh and blood [men] have not revealed this to you, but My Father Who is in heaven. 18 And I tell you, you are [e]Peter [Greek, Petros—a large piece of rock], and on this rock [Greek, petra—a [f]huge rock like Gibraltar] I will build My church, and the gates of Hades (the powers of the [g]infernal region) shall [h]not overpower it [or be strong to its detriment or hold out against it]. 19 I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; and whatever you bind (declare to be improper and unlawful) on earth [i]must be what is already bound in heaven; and whatever you loose (declare lawful) on earth [j]must be what is already loosed in heaven. 20 Then He sternly and strictly charged and warned the disciples to tell no one that He was Jesus the Christ.

21 From that time forth Jesus began [clearly] to show His disciples that He must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things at the hands of the elders and the high priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised [k]from death. 22 Then Peter took Him aside [l]to speak to Him privately and began to reprove and [m]charge Him sharply, saying, God forbid, Lord! This must never happen to You! 23 But Jesus turned [n]away from Peter and said to him, Get behind Me, Satan! You are in My way [an offense and a hindrance and a snare to Me]; for you are [o]minding what partakes not of the nature and quality of God, but of men.

24 Then Jesus said to His disciples, If anyone desires to be My disciple, let him deny himself [disregard, lose sight of, and forget himself and his own interests] and take up his cross and follow Me [[p]cleave steadfastly to Me, conform wholly to My example in living and, if need be, in dying, also]. 25 For whoever is bent on saving his [temporal] life [his comfort and security here] shall lose it [eternal life]; and whoever loses his life [his comfort and security here] for My sake shall find it [life everlasting]. 26 For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his life [his blessed [q]life in the kingdom of God]? Or what would a man give as an exchange for his [blessed] [r]life [in the kingdom of God]? 27 For the Son of Man is going to come in the glory (majesty, splendor) of His Father with His angels, and then He will render account and reward every man in accordance with what he has done. 28 Truly I tell you, there are some standing here who will not taste death before they see the Son of Man coming in (into) His kingdom.

Matthew 17

And six days after this, Jesus took with Him Peter and James and John his brother, and led them up on a high mountain by themselves. And His appearance underwent a change in their presence; and His face shone [a]clear and bright like the sun, and His clothing became as white as light. And behold, there appeared to them Moses and Elijah, who kept talking with Him. Then Peter began to speak and said to Jesus, Lord, it is good and delightful that we are here; if You approve, I will put up three booths here—one for You and one for Moses and one for Elijah. While he was still speaking, behold, a shining cloud [[b]composed of light] overshadowed them, and a voice from the cloud said, This is My Son, My Beloved, with Whom I am [and [c]have always been] delighted. Listen to Him! When the disciples heard it, they fell on their faces and were [d]seized with alarm and struck with fear. But Jesus came and touched them and said, Get up, and do not be afraid. And when they raised their eyes, they saw no one but Jesus only.

And as they were going down the mountain, Jesus cautioned and commanded them, Do not mention to anyone what you have seen, until the Son of Man has been raised from the dead. 10 The disciples asked Him, Then why do the scribes say that Elijah must come first? 11 He replied, Elijah does come and will get everything restored and ready. 12 But I tell you that Elijah has come already, and they did not know or recognize him, but did to him as they liked. So also the Son of Man is going to be treated and suffer at their hands. 13 Then the disciples understood that He spoke to them about John the Baptist.

14 And when they approached the multitude, a man came up to Him, kneeling before Him and saying, 15 Lord, do pity and have mercy on my son, for he has epilepsy (is [e]moonstruck) and he suffers terribly; for frequently he falls into the fire and many times into the water. 16 And I brought him to Your disciples, and they were not able to cure him. 17 And Jesus answered, O you unbelieving ([f]warped, wayward, rebellious) and [g]thoroughly perverse generation! How long am I to remain with you? How long am I to bear with you? Bring him here to Me. 18 And Jesus rebuked the demon, and it came out of him, and the boy was cured instantly. 19 Then the disciples came to Jesus and asked privately, Why could we not drive it out? 20 He said to them, Because of the littleness of your faith [that is, your lack of [h]firmly relying trust]. For truly I say to you, if you have faith [[i]that is living] like a grain of mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, Move from here to yonder place, and it will move; and nothing will be impossible to you.

21 [j]But this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting.

22 When they were going about here and there in Galilee, Jesus said to them, The Son of Man is going to be turned over into the hands of men. 23 And they will kill Him, and He will be raised [to life] again on the third day. And they were deeply and exceedingly grieved and distressed.

24 When they arrived in Capernaum, the collectors of the half shekel [the temple tax] went up to Peter and said, Does not your Teacher pay the half shekel? 25 He answered, Yes. And when he came home, Jesus spoke to him [about it] first, saying, What do you think, Simon? From whom do earthly rulers collect duties or tribute—from their own sons or from others [k]not of their own family? 26 And when Peter said, From other people [l]not of their own family, Jesus said to him, Then the sons are exempt. 27 However, in order not to give offense and cause them to stumble [that is, to cause them [m]to judge unfavorably and unjustly] go down to the sea and throw in a hook. Take the first fish that comes up, and when you open its mouth you will find there a shekel. Take it and give it to them to pay the temple tax for Me and for yourself.

Matthew 18

At that time the disciples came up and asked Jesus, Who then is [really] the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?

And He called a little child to Himself and put him in the midst of them, And said, Truly I say to you, unless you repent (change, turn about) and become like little children [trusting, lowly, loving, forgiving], you can never enter the kingdom of heaven [at all]. Whoever will humble himself therefore and become like this little child [trusting, lowly, loving, forgiving] is greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoever receives and accepts and welcomes one little child like this for My sake and in My name receives and accepts and welcomes Me.

But whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in and [a]acknowledge and cleave to Me to stumble and sin [that is, who entices him or hinders him in right conduct or thought], it would be better ([b]more expedient and profitable or advantageous) for him to have a great millstone fastened around his neck and to be sunk in the depth of the sea.

Woe to the world for such temptations to sin and influences to do wrong! It is necessary that temptations come, but woe to the person on whose account or by whom the temptation comes!

And if your hand or your foot causes you to stumble and sin, cut it off and throw it away from you; it is better (more profitable and wholesome) for you to enter life maimed or lame than to have two hands or two feet and be thrown into everlasting fire. And if your eye causes you to stumble and sin, pluck it out and throw it away from you; it is better (more profitable and wholesome) for you to enter life with only one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into the hell (Gehenna) of fire.

10 Beware that you do not despise or feel scornful toward or think little of one of these little ones, for I tell you that in heaven their angels always are in the presence of and look upon the face of My Father Who is in heaven.

11 [c]For the Son of man came to save [[d]from the penalty of eternal death] that which was lost.

12 What do you think? If a man has a hundred sheep, and one of them has gone astray and gets lost, will he not leave the ninety-nine on the mountain and go in search of the one that is lost? 13 And if it should be that he finds it, truly I say to you, he rejoices more over it than over the ninety-nine that did not get lost. 14 Just so it is not the will of My Father Who is in heaven that one of these little ones should be lost and perish.

15 If your brother wrongs you, go and show him his fault, between you and him privately. If he listens to you, you have won back your brother. 16 But if he does not listen, take along with you one or two others, so that every word may be confirmed and upheld by the testimony of two or three witnesses. 17 If he pays no attention to them [refusing to listen and obey], tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a pagan and a tax collector.

18 Truly I tell you, whatever you forbid and declare to be improper and unlawful on earth must be [e]what is already forbidden in heaven, and whatever you permit and declare proper and lawful on earth must be [f]what is already permitted in heaven.

19 Again I tell you, if two of you on earth agree (harmonize together, make a symphony together) about whatever [anything and [g]everything] they may ask, it will come to pass and be done for them by My Father in heaven. 20 For wherever two or three are gathered (drawn together as My followers) in (into) My name, there I Am in the midst of them.

21 Then Peter came up to Him and said, Lord, how many times may my brother sin against me and I forgive him and [h]let it go? [As many as] up to seven times? 22 Jesus answered him, I tell you, not up to seven times, but seventy times seven! 23 Therefore the kingdom of heaven is like a human king who wished to settle accounts with his attendants. 24 When he began the accounting, one was brought to him who owed him 10,000 talents [probably about $10,000,000], 25 And because he could not pay, his master ordered him to be sold, with his wife and his children and everything that he possessed, and payment to be made. 26 So the attendant fell on his knees, begging him, Have patience with me and I will pay you everything. 27 And his master’s heart was moved with compassion, and he released him and forgave him [cancelling] the debt. 28 But that same attendant, as he went out, found one of his fellow attendants who owed him a hundred denarii [about twenty dollars]; and he caught him by the throat and said, Pay what you owe! 29 So his fellow attendant fell down and begged him earnestly, Give me time, and I will pay you all! 30 But he was unwilling, and he went out and had him put in prison till he should pay the debt. 31 When his fellow attendants saw what had happened, they were greatly distressed, and they went and told everything that had taken place to their master. 32 Then his master called him and said to him, You contemptible and wicked attendant! I forgave and cancelled all that [great] debt of yours because you begged me to. 33 And should you not have had pity and mercy on your fellow attendant, as I had pity and mercy on you? 34 And in wrath his master turned him over to the torturers (the jailers), till he should pay all that he owed.

35 So also My heavenly Father will deal with every one of you if you do not freely forgive your brother from your heart his offenses.

And the Women of God joined their hearts as one and raised their praise with a mighty “Amen”

#Lessonsfromlent

What a Word we have read today! The order of things is so striking to me. Please don’t miss that sandwiched right in between the accounts of the feeding of the five thousand with baskets of bread leftover and the feeding of the four thousand with baskets of bread leftover is the woman who professes that the crumbs will be enough for her. She gives voice and expression and life to the belief of the beggars who simply wanted to touch the hem of His garment.

  • Imagine how her declaration of faith fell upon the ears of the Bread of Life – “Lord, Savior, Messiah whatever I have of you will be enough!”

And Jesus doesn’t stop with simply telling Peter to forgive an innumerable amount of times. . . He explains to him why with the parable of the human king and the unmerciful servant.   Peter, nor you and I, can misunderstand that Jesus was speaking directly to us. I must forgive the little I have been sinned against because I have been forgiven of the much I have sinned.

O How I am praising Him for a fresh word today from sweet, familiar, read-a-thousand-times passages. It’s exactly what I’ve asked Him for and I thank Him for His kindness toward me.

58 And He did not do many works of power there, because of their unbelief (their lack of faith [v]in the divine mission of Jesus). Matthew 13:58

30 But when he perceived and felt the strong wind, he was frightened, and as he began to sink, he cried out, Lord, save me [from death]! 31 Instantly Jesus reached out His hand and caught and held him, saying to him, O you of little faith, why did you doubt? Matthew 14:30

He said to them, Because of the littleness of your faith [that is, your lack of [h]firmly relying trust]. For truly I say to you, if you have faith [[i]that is living] like a grain of mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, Move from here to yonder place, and it will move; and nothing will be impossible to you. Matthew 17:20

 Lord, thank you for the blessing of an expectant heart and showing yourself again to be the God of More. Protect me from unbelief that will keep you from doing a powerful work in my heart. Keep me from being so frightened by the storms of this life that I doubt Your care and your goodness toward me. Shield me from a small faith that refuses to ask big things of you and help me to always believe you to be more than I understand. Jesus, you are always enough! In Your Mighty Name I pray.

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No life-storm can take you where the hand of Jesus cannot reach you. #lessonsfromlent

Day Two: Lessons from Lent

19 Feb

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An Explanation of Lessons from Lent

In the next 40 days (39 now because you have already accomplished one), the weeks leading up to Easter, the posts on Glimpsed Glory will be different. I am reading through the New Testament during this time and I am hoping the Holy Spirit will lead me to a fresh revelation each and every day. I’m going into it with a prayerful heart and an expectant spirit but I will fully confess to you that my soul feels sluggish.

I have been in a place of exhaustion over these last months. My mind has been clouded, my body has ached and insomnia has been my companion since late December. The enemy has been and is still whispering in my ear that my Jesus has forgotten me . . . that He has finally tired of my imperfections and left me behind.

I’m not giving in to it! I am going to fight the good fight of faith and follow the example of my Nehemiah Man. I am going to stand firm in my faith because if I do not, I will not stand at all. I’m praising God for bringing me to a place of emptiness so that I can look to Him to fill my cup.

I’m coming before the Lord and I’m asking Him to do a new thing in me. To rouse my heart to His side and to draw me near in real and tangible ways. To plow through the fog that has settled over me in the form of health issues, physical stress, and emotional upheaval and lay a level path before me. I’m entering the throne room and I’m humbly reminding Him that He has invited me to come in my time of need. O Lord – be near to me. Love me where I am. Take me where I need to be.

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That’s the cry of my heart Sweet Sister and I’m thinking that if I am in this place that perhaps you are too. It might be that different life situations have brought us here but here we are. If that’s the case, I want you to know that you are not alone and that you have a faith sister to walk through it with. We can do this together – you and I. It’s why God gave us to one another. We can join our hearts and we can offer up the next 40 days to the Beautiful One and trust Him to do the beautiful thing in us.

So here’s what I’ll do. I’ll post the daily reading on the blog (except for Sundays) and if you read the Scriptures not only will you have read through the entire New Testament by Easter but God promises that He’ll show you deep and unsearchable things you do not know. He promises that His word is alive and active and will transform your heart. I could use some transformation. What about you?

At the end of the daily passage, I’m going to share my “Lesson from Lent” – nothing long or drawn out just something that God uses to speak straight to my heart from the Scripture that day. I’m putting it at the end because if your time runs short on a particular day – I want you to skip reading my words, not His.

I’m hoping that you’ll start your own running record of what God is showing you. Maybe you’ll even be moved to leave a comment so your Sisters can glean from what you’re learning. No matter how you choose to keep track of all He shares with you . . . treasure it up in your heart Sweet One, meditate on it, mull it over, consider the whisper of the Lover of your soul. The God of the Universe is the only Voice we need to revive our tired souls. So, let’s you and I lean in close, pray for ears to hear and hearts to respond. Let’s dig in to the riches He has given us and prepare to be amazed by what He will reveal to our expectant hearts. O Sister, let’s boldly ask Him for a lesson from Lent and then brace ourselves for a glimpse of Glory!

Day Two

February 19, 2015 ~~ Matthew 8-12

Amplified Bible

Footnotes: I’ve left the footnotes in place if you would like to track down sources in word study and language. Please follow the link to each chapter and scroll to the bottom of the passage.

Matthew 8

When Jesus came down from the mountain, great throngs followed Him. And behold, a leper came up to Him and, prostrating himself, worshiped Him, saying, Lord, if You are willing, You are able to [a]cleanse me by curing me. And He reached out His hand and touched him, saying, I am willing; be cleansed [b]by being cured. And instantly his leprosy was cured and cleansed. And Jesus said to him, See that you tell nothing about this to anyone; but go, show yourself to the priest and present the offering that Moses commanded, for a testimony [to your healing] and as an evidence to the people.

As Jesus went into Capernaum, a centurion came up to Him, begging Him, And saying, Lord, my servant boy is lying at the house paralyzed and [c]distressed with intense pains. And Jesus said to him, I will come and restore him. But the centurion replied to Him, Lord, I am not worthy or fit to have You come under my roof; but only speak the word, and my servant boy will be cured. For I also am a man subject to authority, with soldiers subject to me. And I say to one, Go, and he goes; and to another, Come, and he comes; and to my slave, Do this, and he does it.

10 When Jesus heard him, He marveled and said to those who followed Him [[d]who adhered steadfastly to Him, conforming to His example in living and, if need be, in dying also], I tell you truly, I have not found so much faith as this [e]with anyone, even in Israel.

11 I tell you, many will come from east and west, and will sit at table with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven, 12 While the sons and heirs of the kingdom will be driven out into the darkness outside, where there will be weeping and grinding of teeth. 13 Then to the centurion Jesus said, Go; it shall be done for you as you have believed. And the servant boy was restored to health at that very [f]moment.

14 And when Jesus went into Peter’s house, He saw his mother-in-law lying ill with a fever. 15 He touched her hand and the fever left her; and she got up and began waiting on Him.

16 When evening came, they brought to Him many who were [g]under the power of demons, and He drove out the spirits with a word and restored to health all who were sick.

17 And thus He fulfilled what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah, He Himself took [[h]in order to carry away] our weaknesses and infirmities and bore [i]away our diseases.

18 Now Jesus, when He saw the great throngs around Him, gave orders to cross to the other side [of the lake]. 19 And a scribe came up and said to Him, Master, I will accompany You wherever You go. 20 And Jesus replied to him, Foxes have holes and the birds of the air have lodging places, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head.

21 Another of the disciples said to Him, Lord, let me first go and bury [[j]care for till death] my father. 22 But Jesus said to him, Follow Me, and leave the dead [[k]in sin] to bury their own dead.

23 And after He got into the boat, His disciples followed Him.

24 And [l]suddenly, behold, there arose a violent storm on the sea, so that the boat was being covered up by the waves; but He was sleeping. 25 And they went and awakened Him, saying, Lord, rescue and preserve us! We are perishing! 26 And He said to them, Why are you timid and afraid, O you of little faith? Then He got up and rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was a great and wonderful calm ([m]a perfect peaceableness). 27 And the men were stunned with bewildered wonder and marveled, saying, What kind of Man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey Him!

28 And when He arrived at the other side in the country of the Gadarenes, two men under the control of demons went to meet Him, coming out of the tombs, so fierce and savage that no one was able to pass that way. 29 And behold, they shrieked and screamed, What have You to do with us, Jesus, Son of God? Have You come to torment us before the appointed time?

30 Now at some distance from there a drove of many hogs was grazing. 31 And the demons begged Him, If You drive us out, send us into the drove of hogs. 32 And He said to them, Begone! So they came out and went into the hogs, and behold, the whole drove rushed down the steep bank into the sea and died in the water.

33 The herdsmen fled and went into the town and reported everything, including what had happened to the men under the power of demons. 34 And behold, the whole town went out to meet Jesus; and as soon as they saw Him, they begged Him to depart from their locality.

Matthew 9

And Jesus, getting into a boat, crossed to the other side and came to His own town [Capernaum].

And behold, they brought to Him a man paralyzed and prostrated by illness, lying on a sleeping pad; and when Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralyzed man, Take courage, son; your sins are forgiven and the [a]penalty remitted. And behold, some of the scribes said to themselves, This man blasphemes [He claims the rights and prerogatives of God]! But Jesus, knowing ([b]seeing) their thoughts, said, Why do you think evil and harbor [c]malice in your hearts? For which is easier: to say, Your sins are forgiven and the [d]penalty remitted, or to say, Get up and walk?

But in order that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins and [e]remit the penalty, He then said to the paralyzed man, Get up! Pick up your sleeping pad and go to your own house. And he got up and went away to his own house.

When the crowds saw it, they were struck with fear and awe; and they [f]recognized God and praised and thanked Him, Who had given such power and authority to men.

As Jesus passed on from there, He saw a man named Matthew sitting at the tax collector’s office; and He said to him, [g]Be My disciple [side with My party and follow Me]. And he rose and followed Him. 10 And as Jesus reclined at table in the house, behold, many tax collectors and [h][especially wicked] sinners came and sat (reclined) with Him and His disciples. 11 And when the Pharisees saw this, they said to His disciples, Why does your Master eat with tax collectors and those [preeminently] sinful?

12 But when Jesus heard it, He replied, Those who are strong and well (healthy) have no need of a physician, but those who are weak and sick. 13 Go and learn what this means: I desire mercy [that is, [i]readiness to help those in trouble] and not sacrifice and sacrificial victims. For I came not to call and invite [to repentance] the righteous (those who are upright and in right standing with God), but sinners (the erring ones and all those not free from sin).

14 Then the disciples of John came to Jesus, inquiring, Why is it that we and the Pharisees fast [j]often, [that is, abstain from food and drink as a religious exercise], but Your disciples do not fast? 15 And Jesus replied to them, Can the wedding guests mourn while the bridegroom is still with them? The days will come when the bridegroom is taken away from them, and then they will fast.

16 And no one puts a piece of cloth that has not been shrunk on an old garment, for such a patch tears away from the garment and a worse rent (tear) is made. 17 Neither is new wine put in old wineskins; for if it is, the skins burst and are [k]torn in pieces, and the wine is spilled and the skins are ruined. But new wine is put into fresh wineskins, and so both are preserved.

18 While He was talking this way to them, behold, a ruler entered and, kneeling down, worshiped Him, saying, My daughter has just [l]now died; but come and lay Your hand on her, and she will come to life. 19 And Jesus got up and accompanied him, with His disciples.

20 And behold, a woman who had suffered from a flow of blood for twelve years came up behind Him and touched the fringe of His garment; 21 For she kept saying to herself, If I only touch His garment, I shall be restored to health. 22 Jesus turned around and, seeing her, He said, Take courage, daughter! Your faith has made you well. And at once the woman was restored to health.

23 And when Jesus came to the ruler’s house and saw the flute players and the crowd making an uproar and din, 24 He said, Go away; for the girl is not dead but sleeping. And they laughed and jeered at Him. 25 But when the crowd had been ordered to go outside, He went in and took her by the hand, and the girl arose. 26 And the news about this spread through all that district.

27 As Jesus passed on from there, two blind men followed Him, shouting loudly, Have pity and mercy on us, Son of David! 28 When He reached the house and went in, the blind men came to Him, and Jesus said to them, Do you believe that I am able to do this? They said to Him, Yes, Lord. 29 Then He touched their eyes, saying, According to your faith and trust and reliance [on the power invested in Me] be it done to you; 30 And their eyes were opened. And Jesus earnestly and sternly charged them, See that you let no one know about this. 31 But they went off and blazed and spread His fame abroad throughout that whole district.

32 And while they were going away, behold, a dumb man under the power of a demon was brought to Jesus. 33 And when the demon was driven out, the dumb man spoke; and the crowds were stunned with bewildered wonder, saying, Never before has anything like this been seen in Israel. 34 But the Pharisees said, He drives out demons through and with the help of the prince of demons.

35 And Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the good news (the Gospel) of the kingdom and curing all kinds of disease and every weakness and infirmity.

36 When He saw the throngs, He was moved with pity and sympathy for them, because they were bewildered (harassed and distressed and dejected and helpless), like sheep without a shepherd.

37 Then He said to His disciples, The harvest is indeed plentiful, but the laborers are few. 38 So pray to the Lord of the harvest to [m]force out and thrust laborers into His harvest.

Matthew 10

And Jesus summoned to Him His twelve disciples and gave them power and authority over unclean spirits, to drive them out, and to cure all kinds of disease and all kinds of weakness and infirmity. Now these are the names of the twelve apostles (special messengers): first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James son of Zebedee, and John his brother; Philip and Bartholomew [Nathaniel]; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus [Judas, not Iscariot]; Simon the Cananaean, and Judas Iscariot, who also betrayed Him.

Jesus sent out these twelve, charging them, Go nowhere among the Gentiles and do not go into any town of the Samaritans; But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. And as you go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand!

Cure the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, drive out demons. Freely (without pay) you have received, freely (without charge) give. Take no gold nor silver nor [even] copper money in your purses (belts); 10 And do not take a provision bag or a [a]wallet for a collection bag for your journey, nor two undergarments, nor sandals, nor a staff; for the workman deserves his support (his living, his food). 11 And into whatever town or village you go, inquire who in it is deserving, and stay there [at his house] until you leave [that vicinity]. 12 As you go into the house, give your greetings and wish it well. 13 Then if indeed that house is deserving, let come upon it your peace [that is, [b]freedom from all the distresses that are experienced as the result of sin]. But if it is not deserving, let your peace return to you.

14 And whoever will not receive and accept and welcome you nor listen to your message, as you leave that house or town, shake the dust [of it] from your feet. 15 Truly I tell you, it shall be more tolerable on the day of judgment for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah than for that town.

16 Behold, I am sending you out like sheep in the midst of wolves; be [c]wary and wise as serpents, and be innocent (harmless, guileless, and [d]without falsity) as doves. 17 Be on guard against men [whose [e]way or nature is to act in opposition to God]; for they will deliver you up to councils and flog you in their synagogues, 18 And you will be brought before governors and kings for My sake, as a witness to bear testimony before them and to the Gentiles (the nations).

19 But when they deliver you up, do not be anxious about how or what you are to speak; for what you are to say will be given you in that very hour and [f]moment, 20 For it is not you who are speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.

21 Brother will deliver up brother to death, and the father his child; and children will take a stand against their parents and will have them put to death. 22 And you will be hated by all for My name’s sake, but he who perseveres and endures to the end will be saved [[g]from spiritual disease and death in the world to come].

23 When they persecute you in one town [that is, pursue you in a manner that would injure you and cause you to suffer because of your belief], flee to another town; for truly I tell you, you will not have gone through all the towns of Israel before [h] the Son of Man comes.

24 A disciple is not above his teacher, nor is a servant or slave above his master. 25 It is sufficient for the disciple to be like his teacher, and the servant or slave like his master. If they have called the Master of the house Beelzebub [[i]master of the dwelling], how much more will they speak evil of those of His household. 26 So have no fear of them; for nothing is concealed that will not be revealed, or kept secret that will not become known.

27 What I say to you in the dark, tell in the light; and what you hear whispered in the ear, proclaim upon the housetops. 28 And do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul; but rather be afraid of Him who can destroy both soul and body in hell (Gehenna).

29 Are not two [j]little sparrows sold for a penny? And yet not one of them will fall to the ground without your Father’s leave (consent) and notice. 30 But even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. 31 Fear not, then; you are of more value than many sparrows.

32 Therefore, everyone who acknowledges Me before men and confesses Me [[k]out of a state of oneness with Me], I will also acknowledge him before My Father Who is in heaven and [l]confess [that I am abiding in] him. 33 But whoever denies and disowns Me before men, I also will deny and disown him before My Father Who is in heaven.

34 Do not think that I have come to bring peace upon the earth; I have not come to bring peace, but a sword. 35 For I have come to part asunder a man from his father, and a daughter from her mother, and a [m]newly married wife from her mother-in-law— 36 And a man’s foes will be they of his own household. 37 He who loves [and [n]takes more pleasure in] father or mother more than [in] Me is not worthy of Me; and he who loves [and takes more pleasure in] son or daughter more than [in] Me is not worthy of Me; 38 And he who does not take up his cross and follow Me [[o]cleave steadfastly to Me, conforming wholly to My example in living and, if need be, in dying also] is not worthy of Me.

39 Whoever finds his [[p]lower] life will lose it [the higher life], and whoever loses his [lower] life on My account will find it [the higher life].

40 He who receives and welcomes and accepts you receives and welcomes and accepts Me, and he who receives and welcomes and accepts Me receives and welcomes and accepts Him Who sent Me. 41 He who receives and welcomes and accepts a prophet because he is a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward, and he who receives and welcomes and accepts a righteous man because he is a righteous man shall receive a righteous man’s reward.

42 And whoever gives to one of these little ones [in rank or influence] even a cup of cold water because he is My disciple, surely I declare to you, he shall not lose his reward.

Matthew 11

When Jesus had finished His charge to His twelve disciples, He left there to teach and to preach in their [Galilean] cities.

Now when John in prison heard about the activities of Christ, he sent a message by his disciples And asked Him, Are You the One Who was to come, or should we keep on expecting a different one? And Jesus replied to them, Go and report to John what you hear and see: The blind receive their sight and the lame walk, lepers are cleansed (by healing) and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up and the poor have good news (the Gospel) preached to them. And blessed (happy, fortunate, and [a]to be envied) is he who takes no offense at Me and finds no cause for stumbling in or through Me and is not hindered from seeing the Truth.

Then as these men went their way, Jesus began to speak to the crowds about John: What did you go out in the wilderness (desert) to see? A reed swayed by the wind? What did you go out to see then? A man clothed in soft garments? Behold, those who wear soft clothing are in the houses of kings.

But what did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I tell you, and one [[b]out of the common, more eminent, more remarkable, and] [c]superior to a prophet. 10 This is the one of whom it is written, Behold, I send My messenger ahead of You, who shall make ready Your way before You. 11 Truly I tell you, among those born of women there has not risen anyone greater than John the Baptist; yet he who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.

12 And from the days of John the Baptist until the present time, the kingdom of heaven has endured violent assault, and violent men seize it by force [as a precious prize—a [d]share in the heavenly kingdom is sought with most ardent zeal and intense exertion]. 13 For all the Prophets and the Law prophesied up until John. 14 And if you are willing to receive and accept it, John himself is Elijah who was to come [before the kingdom].

15 He who has ears to hear, let him be listening and let him consider and [e]perceive and comprehend by hearing.

16 But to what shall I liken this generation? It is like little children sitting in the marketplaces who call to their playmates, 17 We piped to you [playing wedding], and you did not dance; we wailed dirges [playing funeral], and you did not mourn and beat your breasts and weep aloud.

18 For John came neither eating nor drinking [with others], and they say, He has a demon! 19 The Son of Man came eating and drinking [with others], and they say, Behold, a glutton and a wine drinker, a friend of tax collectors and [[f]especially wicked] sinners! Yet wisdom is justified and vindicated by what she does (her deeds) and by [g]her children.

20 Then He began to censure and reproach the cities in which most of His mighty works had been performed, because they did not repent [and their hearts were not changed]. 21 Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the mighty works done in you had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would long ago have repented in sackcloth and ashes [and their hearts would have been changed]. 22 I tell you [further], it shall be more endurable for Tyre and Sidon on the day of judgment than for you.

23 And you, Capernaum, are you to be lifted up to heaven? You shall be brought down to Hades [the region of the dead]! For if the mighty works done in you had been done in Sodom, it would have continued until today. 24 But I tell you, it shall be more endurable for the land of Sodom on the day of judgment than for you.

25 At that time Jesus began to say, I thank You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth [and [h]I acknowledge openly and joyfully to Your honor], that You have hidden these things from the wise and clever and learned, and revealed them to babies [to the [i]childish, untaught, and unskilled]. 26 Yes, Father, [I praise You that] such was Your gracious will and good pleasure.

27 All things have been entrusted and delivered to Me by My Father; and no one [j]fully knows and [k]accurately understands the Son except the Father, and no one [l]fully knows and [m]accurately understands the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son [n]deliberately wills to make Him known.

28 Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy-laden and overburdened, and I will cause you to rest. [I will [o]ease and relieve and [p]refresh [q]your souls.] 29 Take My yoke upon you and learn of Me, for I am gentle (meek) and humble (lowly) in heart, and you will find rest ([r]relief and ease and refreshment and [s]recreation and blessed quiet) for your souls. 30 For My yoke is wholesome (useful, [t]good—not harsh, hard, sharp, or pressing, but comfortable, gracious, and pleasant), and My burden is light and easy to be borne.

Matthew 12

At that [a]particular time Jesus went through the fields of standing grain on the Sabbath; and His disciples were hungry, and they began to pick off the spikes of grain and to eat.

And when the Pharisees saw it, they said to Him, See there! Your disciples are doing what is unlawful and not permitted on the Sabbath. He said to them, Have you not even read what David did when he was hungry, and those who accompanied him— How he went into the house of God and ate the loaves of the showbread—which was not lawful for him to eat, nor for the men who accompanied him, but for the priests only? Or have you never read in the Law that on the Sabbath the priests in the temple violate the sanctity of the Sabbath [breaking it] and yet are guiltless?

But I tell you, Something greater and [b]more exalted and more majestic than the temple is here!

And if you had only known what this saying means, I desire mercy [readiness to help, to spare, to forgive] rather than sacrifice and sacrificial victims, you would not have condemned the guiltless. For the Son of Man is Lord [even] of the Sabbath.

And going on from there, He went into their synagogue.

10 And behold, a man was there with one withered hand. And they said to Him, Is it lawful or allowable to cure people on the Sabbath days?—that they might accuse Him. 11 But He said to them, What man is there among you, if he has only one sheep and it falls into a pit or ditch on the Sabbath, will not take hold of it and lift it out? 12 How much better and of more value is a man than a sheep! So it is lawful and allowable to do good on the Sabbath days.

13 Then He said to the man, Reach out your hand. And the man reached it out and it was restored, as sound as the other one. 14 But the Pharisees went out and held a consultation against Him, how they might do away with Him.

15 But being aware of this, Jesus went away from there. And many people [c]joined and accompanied Him, and He cured all of them, 16 And strictly charged them and sharply warned them not to make Him [d]publicly known.

17 This was in fulfillment of what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah,

18 Behold, My Servant Whom I have chosen, My Beloved in and with Whom My soul is well pleased and [e]has found its delight. I will put My Spirit upon Him, and He shall proclaim and [f]show forth justice to the nations. 19 He will not strive or wrangle or cry out loudly; nor will anyone hear His voice in the streets; 20 A bruised reed He will not break, and a smoldering (dimly burning) wick He will not quench, till He brings [g]justice and a just cause to victory. 21 And in and on His name will the Gentiles (the [h]peoples outside of Israel) set their hopes.

22 Then a blind and dumb man under the power of a demon was brought to Jesus, and He cured him, so that the blind and dumb man both spoke and saw. 23 And all the [crowds of] people were stunned with bewildered wonder and said, This cannot be the Son of David, can it?

24 But the Pharisees, hearing it, said, This [i]Man drives out demons only by and with the help of Beelzebub, the prince of demons. 25 And knowing their thoughts, He said to them, Any kingdom that is divided against itself is being brought to desolation and laid waste, and no city or house divided against itself will last or continue to stand.

26 And if Satan drives out Satan, he has become divided against himself and disunified; how then will his kingdom last or continue to stand? 27 And if I drive out the demons by [help of] Beelzebub, by whose [help] do your sons drive them out? [j]For this reason they shall be your judges. 28 But if it is by the Spirit of God that I drive out the demons, then the kingdom of God has come upon you [[k]before you expected it].

29 Or how can a person go into a strong man’s house and carry off his goods (the entire equipment of his house) without first binding the strong man? Then indeed he may plunder his house.

30 He who is not with Me [definitely [l]on My side] is against Me, and he who does not [definitely] gather with Me and for [m]My side scatters. 31 Therefore I tell you, every sin and blasphemy (every evil, abusive, [n]injurious speaking, or indignity against sacred things) can be forgiven men, but blasphemy against the [Holy] Spirit shall not and [o]cannot be forgiven. 32 And whoever speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but whoever speaks against the Spirit, the Holy One, will not be forgiven, either in this world and age or in the world and age to come.

33 Either make the tree sound (healthy and good), and its fruit sound (healthy and good), or make the tree rotten (diseased and bad), and its fruit rotten (diseased and bad); for the tree is known and recognized and judged by its fruit.

34 You offspring of vipers! How can you speak good things when you are evil (wicked)? For out of the fullness (the overflow, the [p]superabundance) of the heart the mouth speaks. 35 The good man from his inner good treasure [q]flings forth good things, and the evil man out of his inner evil storehouse [r]flings forth evil things.

36 But I tell you, on the day of judgment men will have to give account for every [s]idle (inoperative, nonworking) word they speak. 37 For by your words you will be justified and acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned and sentenced.

38 Then some of the scribes and Pharisees said to Him, Teacher, we desire to see a sign or miracle from You [proving that You are what You claim to be].

39 But He replied to them, An evil and adulterous generation (a generation [t]morally unfaithful to God) seeks and demands a sign; but no sign shall be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah. 40 For even as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the sea monster, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. 41 The men of Nineveh will stand up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it; for they repented at the preaching of Jonah, and behold, Someone more and greater than Jonah is here!

42 The queen of the South will stand up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it; for she came from the ends of the earth to listen to the wisdom of Solomon, and behold, Someone more and greater than Solomon is here.

43 But when the unclean spirit has gone out of a man, it roams through dry [arid] places in search of rest, but it does not find any. 44 Then it says, I will go back to my house from which I came out. And when it arrives, it finds the place unoccupied, swept, put in order, and decorated. 45 Then it goes and brings with it seven other spirits more wicked than itself, and they go in and make their home there. And the last condition of that man becomes worse than the first. So also shall it be with this wicked generation.

46 Jesus was still speaking to the people when behold, His mother and brothers stood outside, seeking to speak to Him. 47 [u]Someone said to Him, Listen! Your mother and Your brothers are standing outside, seeking to speak to You. 48 But He replied to the man who told Him, Who is My mother, and who are My brothers? 49 And stretching out His hand toward [not only the twelve disciples but all] [v]His adherents, He said, Here are My mother and My brothers. 50 For whoever does the will of My Father in heaven is My brother and sister and mother!

 And the Women of God joined their voices and chorused “Amen”

#lessonsfromlent

When Jesus heard him, He marveled and said to those who followed Him [[d]who adhered steadfastly to Him, conforming to His example in living and, if need be, in dying also], I tell you truly, I have not found so much faith as this [e]with anyone, even in Israel.  Matthew 8:10

And the men were stunned with bewildered wonder and marveled, saying, What kind of Man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey Him!  Matthew 8:27

For she kept saying to herself, If I only touch His garment, I shall be restored to health. 22 Jesus turned around and, seeing her, He said, Take courage, daughter! Your faith has made you well. And at once the woman was restored to health. Matthew 9:21-22

  • Oh How I want faith that marvels Jesus!  Father, please bless me with faith that you find nothing short of absolutely marvelous.  Open my eyes to be stunned with bewildered wonder and stand in awe at Who you reveal yourself to be, the One that even the winds and sea obey.  Lord, I stretch out my hand in faith and I believe you to be the Healer of my heart, the Refresher of my spirit, and the Quieter of my soul.  Restore me O Lord.  In Jesus Name I pray Amen

creation swap matt 922 tea cup 8704_Quiet_Time

 

 

Lessons from Lent: Day One

18 Feb creation swap lessons from lent coffee cup Kelly Sikkema 22940

#lessonsfromlent

In the next 40 days, the weeks leading up to Easter, the posts on Glimpsed Glory will be different. I am reading through the New Testament during this time and I am hoping the Holy Spirit will lead me to a fresh revelation each and every day. I’m going into it with a prayerful heart and an expectant spirit but I will fully confess to you that my soul feels sluggish.

I have been in a place of exhaustion over these last months. My mind has been clouded, my body has ached and insomnia has been my companion since late December. The enemy has been and is still whispering in my ear that my Jesus has forgotten me . . . that He has finally tired of my imperfections and left me behind.

I’m not giving in to it! I am going to fight the good fight of faith and follow the example of my Nehemiah Man. I am going to stand firm in my faith because if I do not, I will not stand at all. I’m praising God for bringing me to a place of emptiness so that I can look to Him to fill my cup.

I’m coming before the Lord and I’m asking Him to do a new thing in me. To rouse my heart to His side and to draw me near in real and tangible ways. To plow through the fog that has settled over me in the form of health issues, physical stress, and emotional upheaval and lay a level path before me. I’m entering the throne room and I’m humbly reminding Him that He has invited me to come in my time of need. O Lord – be near to me. Love me where I am. Take me where I need to be.

creation swap love me one flower 20608_Flower_Background

That’s the cry of my heart Sweet Sister and I’m thinking that if I am in this place that perhaps you are too. It might be that different life situations have brought us here but here we are. If that’s the case, I want you to know that you are not alone and that you have a faith sister to walk through it with. We can do this together – you and I. It’s why God gave us to one another. We can join our hearts and we can offer up the next 40 days to the Beautiful One and trust Him to do the beautiful thing in us.

So here’s what I’ll do. I’ll post the daily reading on the blog (except for Sundays) and if you read the Scriptures not only will you have read through the entire New Testament by Easter but God promises that He’ll show you deep and unsearchable things you do not know. He promises that His word is alive and active and will transform your heart. I could use some transformation. What about you?

At the end of the daily passage, I’m going to share my “Lesson from Lent” – nothing long or drawn out just something that God uses to speak straight to my heart from the Scripture that day. I’m putting it at the end because if your time runs short on a particular day – I want you to skip reading my words, not His.

I’m hoping that you’ll start your own running record of what God is showing you. Maybe you’ll even be moved to leave a comment so your Sisters can glean from what you’re learning. No matter how you choose to keep track of all He shares with you . . . treasure it up in your heart Sweet One, meditate on it, mull it over, consider the whisper of the Lover of your soul. The God of the Universe is the only Voice we need to revive our tired souls. So, let’s you and I lean in close, pray for ears to hear and hearts to respond. Let’s dig in to the riches He has given us and prepare to be amazed by what He will reveal to our expectant hearts. O Sister, let’s boldly ask Him for a lesson from Lent and then brace ourselves for a glimpse of Glory!

DAY ONE

February 18, 2015 – Matthew Chapters One through Seven from the Amplified Bible

Footnotes: I left the footnote marking there if you would like to track down sources in word study and language. Please follow the link to each chapter and scroll to the bottom of the passage.

 

Matthew 1

The book of the ancestry (genealogy) of Jesus Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed), the son (descendant) of David, the son (descendant) of Abraham.

Abraham was the father of Isaac, Isaac the father of Jacob, Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers,Judah the father of Perez and Zerah, whose mother was Tamar, Perez the father of Hezron, Hezron the father of Aram,Aram the father of Aminadab, Aminadab the father of Nahshon, Nahshon the father of Salmon,Salmon the father of Boaz, whose mother was Rahab, Boaz the father of Obed, whose mother was Ruth, Obed the father of Jesse,Jesse the father of King David, King David the father of Solomon, whose mother had been the wife of Uriah,Solomon the father of Rehoboam, Rehoboam the father of Abijah, Abijah the father of Asa,Asa the father of Jehoshaphat, Jehoshaphat the father of Joram [Jehoram], Joram the father of Uzziah,Uzziah the father of Jotham, Jotham the father of Ahaz, Ahaz the father of Hezekiah,10 Hezekiah the father of Manasseh, Manasseh the father of Amon, Amon the father of Josiah,11 And Josiah became the father of Jeconiah [also called Coniah and Jehoiachin] and his brothers about the time of the removal (deportation) to Babylon.

12 After the exile to Babylon, Jeconiah became the father of Shealtiel [Salathiel], Shealtiel the father of Zerubbabel,13 Zerubbabel the father of Abiud, Abiud the father of Eliakim, Eliakim the father of Azor,14 Azor the father of Sadoc, Sadoc the father of Achim, Achim the father of Eliud,15 Eliud the father of Eleazar, Eleazar the father of Matthan, Matthan the father of Jacob,16 Jacob the father of Joseph, the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, Who is called the Christ. (the Messiah, the Anointed)

17 So all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen, from David to the Babylonian exile (deportation) fourteen generations, from the Babylonian exile to the Christ fourteen generations.

18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place under these circumstances: When His mother Mary had been promised in marriage to Joseph, before they came together, she was found to be pregnant [through the power] of the Holy Spirit.

19 And her [promised] husband Joseph, being a just and upright man and not willing to expose her publicly and to shame and disgrace her, decided to repudiate and dismiss (divorce) her quietly and secretly.

20 But as he was thinking this over, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, Joseph, descendant of David, do not be afraid to take Mary [as] your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of (from, out of) the Holy Spirit.

21 She will bear a Son, and you shall call His name Jesus [the Greek form of the Hebrew Joshua, which means Savior], for He will save His people from their sins [that is, prevent them from [a]failing and missing the true end and scope of life, which is God].

22 All this took place that it might be fulfilled which the Lord had spoken through the prophet,

23 Behold, the virgin shall become pregnant and give birth to a Son, and they shall call His name Emmanuel—which, when translated, means, God with us.

24 Then Joseph, being aroused from his sleep, did as the angel of the Lord had commanded him: he took [her to his side as] his wife.

25 But he had no union with her as her husband until she had borne her firstborn Son; and he called His name Jesus.

Matthew 2

Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men [astrologers] from the east came to Jerusalem, asking,Where is He Who has been born King of the Jews? For we have seen His star in the east [a]at its rising and have come to worship Him.

When Herod the king heard this, he was disturbed and troubled, and the whole of Jerusalem with him.

So he called together all the chief priests and learned men (scribes) of the people and [b]anxiously asked them where the Christ was to be born.

They replied to him, In Bethlehem of Judea, for so it is written by the prophet:

And you Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, you are not in any way least or insignificant among the [c]chief cities of Judah; for from you shall come a Ruler ([d]Leader) Who will govern and [e]shepherd My people Israel.

Then Herod sent for the wise men [astrologers] secretly, and [f]accurately to the last point ascertained from them the time of the appearing of the star [that is, [g]how long the star had made itself visible since its rising in the east].

Then he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, Go and search for the Child carefully and diligently, and when you have found [h]Him, bring me word, that I too may come and worship Him.

When they had listened to the king, they went their way, and behold, the star which had been seen in the east [i]in its rising went before them until it came and stood over the place where the young Child was.

10 When they saw the star, they were thrilled with ecstatic joy.

11 And on going into the house, they saw the Child with Mary His mother, and they fell down and worshiped Him. Then opening their treasure bags, they presented to Him gifts—gold and frankincense and myrrh.

12 And [j]receiving an answer to their asking, they were divinely instructed and warned in a dream not to go back to Herod; so they departed to their own country by a different way.

13 Now after they had gone, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, Get up! [[k]Tenderly] take unto you the young Child and His mother and flee to Egypt; and remain there till I tell you [otherwise], for Herod intends to search for the Child in order to destroy Him.

14 And having risen, he took the Child and His mother by night and withdrew to Egypt

15 And remained there until Herod’s death. This was to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet, Out of Egypt have I called My Son.

16 Then Herod, when he realized that he had been misled by the wise men, was furiously enraged, and he sent and put to death all the male children in Bethlehem and in all that territory who were two years old and under, reckoning according to the date which he had investigated diligently and had learned exactly from the wise men.

17 Then was fulfilled what was spoken by the prophet Jeremiah:

18 A voice was heard in Ramah, wailing and loud lamentation, Rachel weeping for her children; she refused to be comforted, because they were no more.

19 But when Herod died, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt

20 And said, Rise, [[l]tenderly] take unto you the Child and His mother and go to the land of Israel, for those who sought the Child’s life are dead.

21 Then he awoke and arose and [[m]tenderly] took the Child and His mother and came into the land of Israel.

22 But because he heard that Archelaus was ruling over Judea in the place of his father Herod, he was afraid to go there. And being divinely warned in a dream, he withdrew to the region of Galilee.

23 He went and dwelt in a town called Nazareth, so that what was spoken through the prophets might be fulfilled: He shall be called a Nazarene [Branch, Separated One].

Matthew 3

In those days there appeared John the Baptist, preaching in the Wilderness (Desert) of JudeaAnd saying, Repent ([a]think differently; change your mind, regretting your sins and changing your conduct), for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.

This is he who was mentioned by the prophet Isaiah when he said, The voice of one crying in the wilderness (shouting in the desert), Prepare the road for the Lord, make His highways straight (level, [b]direct).

This same John’s garments were made of camel’s hair, and he wore a leather girdle about his waist; and his food was locusts and wild honey.

Then Jerusalem and all Judea and all the country round about the Jordan went out to him; 6And they were baptized in the Jordan by him, confessing their sins.

But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming for baptism, he said to them, You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee and escape from the wrath and indignation [of God against disobedience] that is coming?

Bring forth fruit that is consistent with repentance [let your lives prove your change of heart];

And do not presume to say to yourselves, We have Abraham for our forefather; for I tell you, God is able to raise up descendants for Abraham from these stones!

10 And already the ax is lying at the root of the trees; every tree therefore that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.

11 I indeed baptize you [c]in (with) water [d]because of repentance [that is, because of your [e]changing your minds for the better, heartily amending your ways, with abhorrence of your past sins]. But He Who is coming after me is mightier than I, Whose sandals I am not worthy or fit to take off or carry; He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire.

12 His winnowing fan (shovel, fork) is in His hand, and He will thoroughly clear out and clean His threshing floor and gather and store His wheat in His barn, but the chaff He will burn up with fire that cannot be put out.

13 Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to John to be baptized by him.

14 But John [f]protested strenuously, having in mind to prevent Him, saying, It is I who have need to be baptized by You, and do You come to me?

15 But Jesus replied to him, [g]Permit it just now; for this is the fitting way for [both of] us to fulfill all righteousness [that is, to [h]perform completely whatever is right]. Then he permitted Him.

16 And when Jesus was baptized, He went up at once out of the water; and behold, the heavens were opened, and he [John] saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on Him.

17 And behold, a voice from heaven said, This is My Son, My Beloved, in Whom I delight!

Matthew 4

4 Then Jesus was led (guided) by the [Holy] Spirit into the wilderness (desert) to be tempted (tested and tried) by the devil.

And He went without food for forty days and forty nights, and later He was hungry.

And the tempter came and said to Him, If You are God’s Son, command these stones to be made [[a]loaves of] bread.

But He replied, It has been written, Man shall not live and be upheld and sustained by bread alone, but by every word that comes forth from the mouth of God.

Then the devil took Him into the holy city and placed Him on [b]a turret (pinnacle, [c]gable) of the temple [d]sanctuary.

And he said to Him, If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down; for it is written, He will give His angels charge over you, and they will bear you up on their hands, lest you strike your foot against a stone.

Jesus said to him, [e]On the other hand, it is written also, You shall not tempt, [f]test thoroughly, or [g]try exceedingly the Lord your God.

Again, the devil took Him up on a very high mountain and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and the glory (the splendor, magnificence, preeminence, and excellence) of them.

And he said to Him, These things, all taken together, I will give You, if You will prostrate Yourself before me and do homage and worship me.

10 Then Jesus said to him, Begone, Satan! For it has been written, You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him alone shall you serve.

11 Then the devil departed from Him, and behold, angels came and ministered to Him.

12 Now when Jesus heard that John had been arrested and put in prison, He withdrew into Galilee.

13 And leaving Nazareth, He went and dwelt in Capernaum by the sea, in the country of Zebulun and Naphtali—

14 That what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah might be brought to pass:

15 The land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, in the [h]way to the sea, beyond the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles [of the [i]peoples who are not of Israel]—

16 The people who sat [j](dwelt enveloped) in darkness have seen a great Light, and for those who sat in the land and shadow of death Light has dawned.

17 From that time Jesus began to preach, [k]crying out, Repent ([l]change your mind for the better, heartily amend your ways, with abhorrence of your past sins), for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.

18 As He was walking by the Sea of Galilee, He noticed two brothers, Simon who is called Peter and Andrew his brother, throwing a dragnet into the sea, for they were fishermen.

19 And He said to them, Come [m]after Me [as disciples—letting Me be your Guide], follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men!

20 At once they left their nets and [n]became His disciples [sided with His party and followed Him].

21 And going on further from there He noticed two other brothers, James son of Zebedee and his brother John, in the boat with their father Zebedee, mending their nets and putting them right; and He called them.

22 At once they left the boat and their father and [o]joined Jesus as disciples [sided with His party and followed Him].

23 And He went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues and preaching the good news (Gospel) of the kingdom, and healing every disease and every weakness and infirmity among the people.

24 So the report of Him spread throughout all Syria, and they brought Him all who were sick, those afflicted with various diseases and torments, those under the power of demons, and epileptics, and paralyzed people, and He healed them.

25 And great crowds joined and accompanied Him about, coming from Galilee and Decapolis [the district of the ten cities east of the Sea of Galilee] and Jerusalem and Judea and from the other [the east] side of the Jordan.

Matthew 5

5 Seeing the crowds, He went up on the mountain; and when He was seated, His disciples came to Him.

Then He opened His mouth and taught them, saying:

Blessed (happy, [a]to be envied, and [b]spiritually prosperous—[c]with life-joy and satisfaction in God’s favor and salvation, regardless of their outward conditions) are the poor in spirit (the humble, who rate themselves insignificant), for theirs is the kingdom of heaven!

Blessed and enviably happy [with a [d]happiness produced by the experience of God’s favor and especially conditioned by the revelation of His matchless grace] are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted!

Blessed (happy, blithesome, joyous, [e]spiritually prosperous—[f]with life-joy and satisfaction in God’s favor and salvation, regardless of their outward conditions) are the meek (the mild, patient, long-suffering), for they shall inherit the earth!

Blessed and fortunate and happy and [g]spiritually prosperous (in that state in which the born-again child of God [h]enjoys His favor and salvation) are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness (uprightness and right standing with God), for they shall be [i]completely satisfied!

Blessed (happy, [j]to be envied, and [k]spiritually prosperous—[l]with life-joy and satisfaction in God’s favor and salvation, regardless of their outward conditions) are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy!

Blessed (happy, [m]enviably fortunate, and [n]spiritually prosperous—possessing the [o]happiness produced by the experience of God’s favor and especially conditioned by the revelation of His grace, regardless of their outward conditions) are the pure in heart, for they shall see God!

Blessed (enjoying [p]enviable happiness, [q]spiritually prosperous—[r]with life-joy and satisfaction in God’s favor and salvation, regardless of their outward conditions) are the makers and [s] maintainers of peace, for they shall be called the sons of God!

10 Blessed and happy and [t]enviably fortunate and [u]spiritually prosperous [v](in the state in which the born-again child of God enjoys and finds satisfaction in God’s favor and salvation, regardless of his outward conditions) are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake (for being and doing right), for theirs is the kingdom of heaven!

11 Blessed (happy, [w]to be envied, and [x]spiritually prosperous—[y]with life-joy and satisfaction in God’s favor and salvation, regardless of your outward conditions) are you when people revile you and persecute you and say all kinds of evil things against you falsely on My account.

12 Be glad and supremely joyful, for your reward in heaven is great (strong and intense), for in this same way people persecuted the prophets who were before you.

13 You are the salt of the earth, but if salt has lost its taste (its strength, its quality), how can its saltness be restored? It is not good for anything any longer but to be thrown out and trodden underfoot by men.

14 You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden.

15 Nor do men light a lamp and put it under a peck measure, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all in the house.

16 Let your light so shine before men that they may see your [z]moral excellence and your praiseworthy, noble, and good deeds and [aa]recognize and honor and praise and glorify your Father Who is in heaven.

17 Do not think that I have come to do away with or [ab]undo the Law or the Prophets; I have come not to do away with or undo but to complete and fulfill them.

18 For truly I tell you, until the sky and earth pass away and perish, not one smallest letter nor one little hook [identifying certain Hebrew letters] will pass from the Law until all things [it foreshadows] are accomplished.

19 Whoever then breaks or does away with or relaxes one of the least [important] of these commandments and teaches men so shall be called least [important] in the kingdom of heaven, but he who practices them and teaches others to do so shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.

20 For I tell you, unless your righteousness (your uprightness and your right standing with God) is more than that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.

21 You have heard that it was said to the men of old, You shall not kill, and whoever kills shall be [ac]liable to and unable to escape the punishment imposed by the court.

22 But I say to you that everyone who continues to be [ad]angry with his brother or harbors malice (enmity of heart) against him shall be [ae]liable to and unable to escape the punishment imposed by the court; and whoever speaks contemptuously and insultingly to his brother shall be [af]liable to and unable to escape the punishment imposed by the Sanhedrin, and whoever says, You [ag]cursed fool! [You empty-headed idiot!] shall be [ah]liable to and unable to escape the hell (Gehenna) of fire.

23 So if when you are offering your gift at the altar you there remember that your brother has any [grievance] against you,

24 Leave your gift at the altar and go. First make peace with your brother, and then come back and present your gift.

25 Come to terms quickly with your accuser while you are on the way traveling with him, lest your accuser hand you over to the judge, and the judge to the guard, and you be put in prison.

26 Truly I say to you, you will not be released until you have paid the last fraction of a penny.

27 You have heard that it was said, You shall not commit adultery.

28 But I say to you that everyone who so much as looks at a woman with evil desire for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.

29 If your right eye serves as a trap to ensnare you or is an occasion for you to stumble and sin, pluck it out and throw it away. It is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body be cast into hell (Gehenna).

30 And if your right hand serves as a trap to ensnare you or is an occasion for you to stumble and sin, cut it off and cast it from you. It is better that you lose one of your members than that your entire body should be cast into hell (Gehenna).

31 It has also been said, Whoever divorces his wife must give her a certificate of divorce.

32 But I tell you, Whoever dismisses and repudiates and divorces his wife, except on the grounds of unfaithfulness (sexual immorality), causes her to commit adultery, and whoever marries a woman who has been divorced commits adultery.

33 Again, you have heard that it was said to the men of old, You shall not swear falsely, but you shall perform your oaths to the Lord [as a religious duty].

34 But I tell you, Do not bind yourselves by an oath at all: either by heaven, for it is the throne of God;35 Or by the earth, for it is the footstool of His feet; or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the Great King.

36 And do not swear by your head, for you are not able to make a single hair white or black.

37 Let your Yes be simply Yes, and your No be simply No; anything more than that comes from the evil one.

38 You have heard that it was said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth.

39 But I say to you, Do not resist the evil man [who injures you]; but if anyone strikes you on the right jaw or cheek, turn to him the other one too.

40 And if anyone wants to sue you and take your undershirt (tunic), let him have your coat also.

41 And if anyone forces you to go one mile, go with him two [miles].

42 Give to him who keeps on begging from you, and do not turn away from him who would borrow [[ai]at interest] from you.

43 You have heard that it was said, You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy; 44 But I tell you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,45 [aj]To show that you are the children of your Father Who is in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the wicked and on the good, and makes the rain fall upon the upright and the wrongdoers [alike].

46 For if you love those who love you, what reward can you have? Do not even the tax collectors do that?

47 And if you greet only your brethren, what more than others are you doing? Do not even the Gentiles (the heathen) do that?

48 You, therefore, must be perfect [growing into complete maturity of godliness in mind and character, having reached the proper height of virtue and integrity], as your heavenly Father is perfect.

Matthew 6

Take care not to do your good deeds publicly or before men, in order to be seen by them; otherwise you will have no reward [[a]reserved for and awaiting you] with and from your Father Who is in heaven.

Thus, whenever you give to the poor, do not blow a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites in the synagogues and in the streets like to do, that they may be [b]recognized and honored and praised by men. Truly I tell you, they have their reward [c]in full already.

But when you give to charity, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing,

So that your deeds of charity may be in secret; and your Father Who sees in secret will reward you openly.

Also when you pray, you must not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the corners of the streets, that they may be seen by people. Truly I tell you, they have their reward [d]in full already.

But when you pray, go into your [most] private room, and, closing the door, pray to your Father, Who is in secret; and your Father, Who sees in secret, will reward you in the open.

And when you pray, do not heap up phrases (multiply words, repeating the same ones over and over) as the Gentiles do, for they think they will be heard for their much speaking.

Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask Him.

Pray, therefore, like this: Our Father Who is in heaven, hallowed (kept holy) be Your name.

10 Your kingdom come, Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

11 Give us this day our daily bread.

12 And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven ([e]left, remitted, and let go of the debts, and have [f]given up resentment against) our debtors.

13 And lead (bring) us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.

14 For if you forgive people their trespasses [their [g]reckless and willful sins, [h]leaving them, letting them go, and [i]giving up resentment], your heavenly Father will also forgive you.

15 But if you do not forgive others their trespasses [their [j]reckless and willful sins, [k]leaving them, letting them go, and [l]giving up resentment], neither will your Father forgive you your trespasses.

16 And whenever you are fasting, do not look gloomy and [m]sour and [n]dreary like the hypocrites, for they put on a dismal countenance, that their fasting may be apparent to and seen by men. Truly I say to you, they have their reward [o]in full already.

17 But when you fast, perfume your head and wash your face,

18 So that your fasting may not be noticed by men but by your Father, Who sees in secret; and your Father, Who sees in secret, will reward you in the open.

19 Do not [p]gather and heap up and store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust and worm consume and destroy, and where thieves break through and steal.

20 But [q]gather and heap up and store for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust nor worm consume and destroy, and where thieves do not break through and steal; 21 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

22 The eye is the lamp of the body. So if your eye is sound, your entire body will be full of light.

23 But if your eye is unsound, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the very light in you [your [r]conscience] is darkened, how dense is that darkness!

24 No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will stand by and be devoted to the one and despise and be [s]against the other. You cannot serve God and mammon ([t]deceitful riches, money, possessions, or [u]whatever is trusted in).

25 Therefore I tell you, stop being [v]perpetually uneasy (anxious and worried) about your life, what you shall eat or what you shall drink; or about your body, what you shall put on. Is not life greater [in quality] than food, and the body [far above and more excellent] than clothing?

26 Look at the birds of the air; they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father keeps feeding them. Are you not worth much more than they?

27 And who of you by worrying and being anxious can add one unit of measure (cubit) to his stature or to the [w]span of his life?

28 And why should you be anxious about clothes? Consider the lilies of the field and [x]learn thoroughly how they grow; they neither toil nor spin.

29 Yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his [y]magnificence (excellence, dignity, and grace) was not arrayed like one of these.

30 But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and green and tomorrow is tossed into the furnace, will He not much more surely clothe you, O you of little faith?

31 Therefore do not worry and be anxious, saying, What are we going to have to eat? or, What are we going to have to drink? or, What are we going to have to wear?

32 For the Gentiles (heathen) wish for and crave and diligently seek all these things, and your heavenly Father knows well that you need them all.

33 But seek ([z]aim at and strive after) first of all His kingdom and His righteousness ([aa]His way of doing and being right), and then all these things [ab]taken together will be given you besides.

34 So do not worry or be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will have worries and anxieties of its own. Sufficient for each day is its own trouble.

Matthew 7

7 Do not judge and criticize and condemn others, so that you may not be judged and criticized and condemned yourselves.

For just as you judge and criticize and condemn others, you will be judged and criticized and condemned, and in accordance with the measure you [use to] deal out to others, it will be dealt out again to you.

Why do you [a]stare from without at the [b]very small particle that is in your brother’s eye but do not become aware of and consider the beam [c]of timber that is in your own eye?

Or how can you say to your brother, Let me get the tiny particle out of your eye, when there is the beam [d]of timber in your own eye?

You hypocrite, first get the beam of timber out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the tiny particle out of your brother’s eye.

Do not give that which is holy (the sacred thing) to the dogs, and do not throw your pearls before hogs, lest they trample upon them with their feet and turn and tear you in pieces.

7 [e]Keep on asking and it will be given you; [f] keep on seeking and you will find; [g]keep on knocking [reverently] and [the door] will be opened to you.

For everyone who keeps on asking receives; and he who keeps on seeking finds; and to him who keeps on knocking, [the door] will be opened.

Or what man is there of you, if his son asks him for a loaf of bread, will hand him a stone?

10 Or if he asks for a fish, will hand him a serpent?

11 If you then, evil as you are, know how to give good and [h]advantageous gifts to your children, how much more will your Father Who is in heaven [perfect as He is] give good and [i]advantageous things to those who [j]keep on asking Him!

12 So then, whatever you desire that others would do to and for you, even so do also to and for them, for this is (sums up) the Law and the Prophets.

13 Enter through the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and spacious and broad is the way that leads away to destruction, and many are those who are entering through it.

14 But the gate is narrow (contracted [k]by pressure) and the way is straitened and compressed that leads away to life, and few are those who find it.

15 Beware of false prophets, who come to you dressed as sheep, but inside they are devouring wolves.

16 You will [l]fully recognize them by their fruits. Do people pick grapes from thorns, or figs from thistles?

17 Even so, every healthy (sound) tree bears good fruit [[m]worthy of admiration], but the sickly (decaying, worthless) tree bears bad (worthless) fruit.

18 A good (healthy) tree cannot bear bad (worthless) fruit, nor can a bad (diseased) tree bear [n]excellent fruit [worthy of admiration].

19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and cast into the fire.

20 Therefore, you will [o]fully know them by their fruits.

21 Not everyone who says to Me, Lord, Lord, will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father Who is in heaven.

22 Many will say to Me on that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name and driven out demons in Your name and done many mighty works in Your name?

23 And then I will say to them openly (publicly), I never knew you; depart from Me, you who act wickedly [disregarding My commands].

24 So everyone who hears these words of Mine and acts upon them [obeying them] will be like a [p]sensible (prudent, practical, wise) man who built his house upon the rock.

25 And the rain fell and the floods came and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock.

26 And everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not do them will be like a stupid (foolish) man who built his house upon the sand.

27 And the rain fell and the floods came and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell—and great and complete was the fall of it.

28 When Jesus had finished these sayings [the Sermon on the Mount], the crowds were astonished and overwhelmed with bewildered wonder at His teaching,

29 For He was teaching as One Who had [and was] authority, and not as [did] the scribes.

And the Women of God say “Amen” to the reading of His Word.

#Lessonsfromlent

19 And her [promised] husband Joseph, being a just and upright man and not willing to expose her publicly and to shame and disgrace her, decided to repudiate and dismiss (divorce) her quietly and secretly. Matthew 1:19

Lord,

Give me a heart like Joseph’s. Help me to stop being prepared to be offended or hurt by others. Give me a gracious spirit. . . one that forgives before it is asked. One that protects hearts rather than points fingers. Empty me of me and fill me with your grace. Bless me with humility and a merciful heart. In Jesus Name I pray. Amen

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